even President Trump has complained about Google manipulating its
search results, the social media giant’s underhanded practices are
finally getting some attention. A Fox
News report Friday noted that at Google,
“internal emails show conversations between employees highlighting
a desire to manipulate search results on the heels of President
Trump’s controversial travel ban in order to mute conservative
viewpoints and push ways to combat the ban.” Google claims that
this remained on the level of discussion, and wasn’t implemented,
but there is considerable evidence to the contrary.
show that “Google employees suggested ways to ‘leverage’ the
search engine to combat what the tech giant staffers considered
anti-immigration rhetoric and news.” Specifically, “Google
staffers suggested actively countering ‘islamophobic,
algorithmically biased results from search terms “Islam,”
“Muslim,” “Iran,” etc.’” But all is well, Google would have us
believe, because this wasn’t done.
But we already knew that Google was manipulating search results
for words such as “Islam” and “Muslim.” We have known for quite
some time. On July 26, 2017, Turkey’s state-run news outlet Anadolu
first page results for searches of terms such as “jihad”,
“shariah” and “taqiyya” now return mostly reputable explanations
of the Islamic concepts. Taqiyya, which describes the
circumstances under which a Muslim can conceal their belief in the
face of persecution, is the sole term to feature a questionablewebsite
on the first page of results.
according to whom? “Questionable” according to whom?
bowing to pressure from Texas imam Omar Suleiman, who led an
initiative to compel Google to skew its results. Apparently Google
didn’t consider whether those who were demanding that search
results be manipulated in a particular direction might have had an
ulterior motive. Could it have been that those who were pressuring
Google wished to conceal certain truths about Islam that they
preferred non-Muslims not know?
about Islam and Muslims on the world’s largest search engine have
been updated amid public pressure to tamp down alleged
disinformation from hate groups,” Anadolu Agency reported. Google
could have performed a bit of due diligence to determine if
sources being tarred as “hate groups” actually deserved the label,
and if the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations
(CAIR) and the hard-Left smear propaganda organization the
Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), both of which are invoked in
the Anadolu article, were really reliable and objective arbiters
for defining “hate groups.” Google could have tried to determine
whether or not the information it was suppressing was really
inaccurate. Instead, Google swallowed uncritically everything Omar
Suleiman and his allies said.
his success, Suleiman still isn’t satisfied:
leading activist in favor of Google modifying its results told
Anadolu Agency he noticed the updated search results and thanked
the company for its efforts but said “much still needs to be
done.” He claimed that Google has a responsibility to “combat
‘hate-filled Islamophobia’ similar to how they work to suppress
extremist propaganda from groups like Daesh and al-Qaeda."
should have made Google executives stop and think.
Islamic State (Daesh) and al-Qaeda slaughter people gleefully and
call openly for more mass murders. There is no corresponding
“Islamophobic” terror organization. There have been over 30,000
lethal jihad attacks worldwide since 9/11, and no remotely
corresponding wave of “Islamophobic” violence. CAIR and the SPLC
claim in the Anadolu Agency article that supposedly “Islamophobic”
rhetoric has led to a rise in hate crimes against Muslims, but
this is not supported by a scintilla of evidence.
Suleiman equated critical words about Islam with the direct
exhortations to murder emanating from actual murderers, Google
should have realized that Suleiman had an agenda and wasn’t being
honest. Yet he tried to pose as an impartial arbiter: “Suleiman
said Google should differentiate between ‘criticism of Islam and
hate-filled Islamophobia’, emphasizing the religion should not be
is granting that acceptable criticism of Islam is different from
“hate-filled Islamophobia.” But if that is so, then the religion can be
“infringed upon” by this legitimate criticism, no? Or if the claim
that Islam must not be “infringed upon” means that it cannot be
criticized, why is that so of Islam but no other religion?
says: “I don’t think Google has a responsibility to portray
Muslims positively. I think Google has a responsibility to weed
out fear-mongering and hate groups but I don’t want Google to
silence critique of Islam, or critique of Muslims.”
problem with this is that neither Suleiman, nor Hamas-linked CAIR,
nor anyone else who has ever said that there was a distinction
between legitimate criticism of Islam and “hate-filled
Islamophobia” has ever identified anyone they
think is a legitimate critic of Islam without being
books, thousands of articles, and over 60,000 blog posts at Jihad
Watch, I have attempted to present a reasonable, documented,
fair, and accurate criticism of Islam and explanation of the jihad
doctrine. Nevertheless, I’ve been tarred as a purveyor of
“hate-filled Islamophobia” by groups and individuals that have
never given my work a fair hearing, and have read it only to
search for “gotcha!” quotes they could wrench away from their
obviously benign meaning in order to claim I was stating something
doesn’t happen only to me. It happens to anyone and everyone who
dares to utter a critical word about Islam or jihad, wherever they
are on the political spectrum.
experience, reinforced countless times over a decade and a half,
makes me extremely skeptical when Omar Suleiman says that he
doesn’t want Google to silence critique of Islam. If he could
produce a critique of Islam that he approved of, my skepticism
might lessen. But he won’t, and can’t.
much more likely that he pressured Google to skew its results so
as to deep-six criticism of Islam. Probably, knowing that he
couldn’t reveal he was trying to bring Google into compliance with
Sharia blasphemy laws forbidding criticism of Islam, he told them
instead that he wasn’t against criticism of Islam as such, but
only against “hate-filled Islamophobia.”
fell for it, making their present claims not to have skewed
searches on Islam ring hollow.