Google has launched a new program that, on the forefront is supposed to defeat online harassment but in reality it has taught Google how to censor its users. Don’t believe us… just see what happens when you try to type “ISIS is a Terrorist Group” into the search engine.
Last September, according to Wired, a Google offshoot called Jigsaw sought to limit online harassment by using machine learning. That project quickly turned into something that Google calls, “Perspective.” What Perspective does, according to the outlet, is use machine learning artificial intelligence technology the code can automatically detect harassment, threats, insults and abusive online speech.
Apparently, labeling ISIS as a terrorist group is frowned upon by Perspective. According to Middle East Forums, statements like that could be labeled as “toxic” by the AI technology.
Perspective’s website allows users to test the toxicity levels of their search queries and that particular phrase garnered and impressive 87 percent toxicity rating.
That got us thinking, maybe we should see if this toxicity measuring tool has affected Google searches. The results are shocking. By now most people are aware of Google’s predicative search function. You type one word and it gives several options “guessing” and what your search will be.
So we started off by typing in ISIS. We got several predictive search queries in the drop down menu. “Isis Soldiers,” “ISIS Is a ” and “ISIS gallardo,” show up in the menu offerings.
Continuing on we type, “ISIS IS A,” and more search predictions pop-up, though our personal favorite is “ISIS is a hoax.”
So we go one step further, wondering when Google will start telling the truth about the Islamic State Group. We add a “T,” and the results already have us scratching our heads.
ISIS is a threat, yes, but is that the most obvious prediction that Google could come up with? So we help it out a little… let’s write “Isis is a Te,” thinking that surely then Google will understand what we are looking for…
However we would be incorrect in our thinking. By adding a “TE” Google completely abandons our search query and offers no other predictions.
However, we didn’t stop there. Sure, Google did not offer anymore predictive assistance when it came to us trying to discover the terrorist roots of ISIS, but surely… surely, if we finish our sentence and type “search” we will get the right answer.
In the words of Rafiki from The Lion King, “Wrong Again.”
Google’s first result is as telling as ever. It’s first hit is “ISIS is NOT a Terrorist Group.” That my friends, is called censorship. That is infringing upon our basic right of freedom of speech. This is not a drill, this is happening.
While it is unclear if Perspective has anything to do with Google completely abandoning our search query and offering no other predictions, and in Google steering the conversation to the liberal… er I mean, literal opposite of what we searched, we do believe that some changes are happening at the tech giant company and those changes are meant to keep us quiet and believe what “they” want us to believe.
Usually we’d say don’t try this at home but in this case… try away.