Sunday, August 20, 2017

Seton Motley: Silicon Valley’s ‘News’ Services Bad News for Less Government Everywhere

For decades now, all of America’s major institutions – have been broadly, unquestionably Leftist, and rigidly opposed to any deviance from the entrenched doctrine.

Colleges and universities, Hollywood and entertainment, the Sciences and the News Media – all deeply in Leftism’s thrall.

And then there is the Silicon Valley – now the biggest, baddest, broadest institution of them all. Because of their dominance of the Internet – they have their hands in all of the legacy institutions.

The Silicon Valley has had for more than a decade a license to print money. And they bestow tens of millions of dollars of it in endowments to Leftist colleges – including tons of coin in directed “science” like global warming…oops, I mean climate change.

The Valley is out Hollywood-ing Hollywood – self-producing a great and growing number of movies and television shows.

And then…there’s the News Media. As we have documented, the News Media cartel’s nexus has shifted from the New York City-Washington, D.C. corridor- to the heart of the Valley. Because with every passing day subscriptions matter less and less – and clicks, Tweets and Shares matter more and more.

And since the Silicon Valley controls clicks, Tweets and Shares – they are more and more controlling the news. Which is…really bad news for those of us who like less government.

Because in case you haven’t noticed – the Valley is decidedly, overwhelmingly Leftist. As Leftist as the News Media NYC-DC cabal is – the Valley, is decidedly, overwhelmingly worse.

The Valley elects people…like Democrat Leader Nancy Pelosi – whom 95+% of Americans find bizarrely, perversely out-of-touch with any semblance of Reality.

The Valley has given hundreds of millions of dollars to all sorts of unbelievably Leftist politicians, people and organizations. Heck, why not cut out the middlemen – Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is considering a run for President.

The Silicon Valley is increasingly the gatekeeper to all things News. More and more people get their news via stories shared on Valley platforms – Facebook and Twitter to name but two giants.

And if you want to search for a news story, Google dominates. Three years ago, Google – all by its onesies – was the search engine used on 67% of computers and 83% of mobile devices.

Which is yet another reason why the Google Memo debacle – is such a debacle. Google scientist James Damore wrote an internal document that, amongst other things, decried Google’s uniform Leftism. It became an external document – and Google made Damore an ex-Google scientist. Reinforcing Damore’s point about Google’s uniform Leftism.

Google Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Sundar Pichai immediately thereafter asserted: “Over the past two days, I have had the chance to meet with so many people here, and I have read each of your emails carefully. The vast majority of you are very supportive of our decision.”

But a poll of Googlers – begs to differ: “When Blind asked its users if they thought Google should have fired Damore, over 4,000 from different companies weighed in. Perhaps most pertinently, 441 Google employees responded. Of them, more than half – 56% to be precise – said they didn’t think it was right for the company to fire Damore.”

Which means the average Googler – is afraid to deviate from the Google political line when interacting with the boss. Further still reinforcing Damore’s point.

And again, Google controls the search results for about 3/4 of Americans. Which, again, is really bad news if you like less government.

In 2012, when someone searched Google for “completely wrong” – Google returned a page of images of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. Google favorably “personalized” searches for Romney’s incumbent opponent – Democrat Barack Obama – but not for Romney.

And small wonder – Google and the Valley were chiefly responsible for Obama being president in the first place.

Google was no better in 2016. They were caught rigging searches to favor Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Google issued a mea culpa – and then was caught STILL rigging searches to favor Clinton.

Yet again: For 3/4 of Americans, these horrendously skewed Google results – are what they’re getting when they search for news.

Facebook is no better. They launched a “news feed” – that overwhelmingly featured Leftist “news.” It was blatantly biased – so much so that it was quickly scrapped.

We are still left to wonder how Facebook’s regular feed algorithm determines which of our Friends’ stories we get to see – and not see.

And now the ultimate irony.

After spending the last decade-plus skewing the News – Google, Facebook and their Valley brethren are now charging themselves…with battling “fake news.”

Physicians – heal thy-selves.

The hope here is: That the Google Memo mess will awaken a whole lot of people to the obnoxious Leftism in which they are nigh completely submerged when they venture online.

Of course, a fish doesn’t know it’s wet – so it’s more than a bit of a reach.

In these circumstances, we look for long shots and small favors.

Seton Motley is the president of the Washington-based Less Government. This article was first published by the Heartland Institute HERE.

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