Google Takes On Russia In Epic Fight

January 26, 2018

It is foolish to challenge Russia to a fight.  Napoleon lost his throne because he tried to invade Russia during winter.  Hitler pissed off Stalin during World War II, so Russia switched sides, then the Nazis invaded in winter.  It is a really bad idea to invade Russia, especially in winter.  Google is duking it out with Russia, but this war is digital so maybe Alphabet stands a chance.  The Washington Report discusses the wired Cold war in, “Google Is Getting Pulled Into A Fight With Russia Over RT And Sputnik.”  The real battle is with two Russian news outlets RT and Sputnik, but they are owned by the government.

The reason for battle is due to Russians apparent and supposed influence on US politics-most notably, the 2016 presidential election.  Russia is accused of spreading fake news through RT and Sputnik.  News outlets like Google News picks these up and are pushed to US readers.  Russia is threatening to retaliate if Google pushes RT and Sputniks’ ratings lower in search rankings.  Google decided to curb fake news stories that could be weaponized information against the US.  Russia’s RT and Sputnik are amongst those that distribute fake news.

When asked why Russian-backed sites enjoy favorable placement on Google’s platforms, Schmidt said, ‘We are working on detecting this kind of scenario … de-ranking those kinds of sites. It’s basically RT and Sputnik are the two.’ He added that the company does not want to ban the outlets. And according to Google, the company does not re-rank individual websites.

Russia is, of course, is not happy.  They claim that Google is being discriminatory and are demanding that Eric Schmidt explain himself.  Google just wants to curb fake news and also make sure their platform is not used for nefarious purposes.  Good luck, Google.  Russia is hard to defeat, but how do they stand on the digital front?

Whitney Grace, January 26, 2018


Comments are closed.

  • Archives

  • Recent Posts

  • Meta