Google: ‘No Concrete Plans’ to De-Rank Content of Russian Media

Google: ‘No Concrete Plans’ to De-Rank Content of Russian Media
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AP Photo/ World06:19 22.11.2017(updated 06:05 22.11.2017) Get short URL
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On Saturday, Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Google’s parent company Alphabet, said that Google was engineering algorithms
that would make it harder for articles from Sputnik News and RT to appear on the Google News service.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Schmidt did not comment on whether engineering a software to hide information could be seen as amounting to censorship. Giving insight on the capabilities of the new algorithm, the official did merely indicate that it would be able to detect “repetitive, exploitative, false, and weaponized” information.

Meantime, a representative of Google has told Sputnik that tech giant had no concrete plans to de-rank Russian media, including the RT and Sputnik news outlets.

“He [Eric Schmidt] was referring to ongoing efforts to improve search quality (e.g., the changes we announced in April), no concrete plans. Also we don’t change our algorithms to re-rank individual sites,” the representative said.

​Earlier, Margarita Simonyan, editor-in-chief of RT broadcaster and Sputnik news agency, has slammed Google over its plans to create particular “de-ranking” tools for materials from both media outlets in Google News search results.

“Good to have Google on record as defying all logic and reason: facts aren’t allowed if they come from RT, ‘because Russia’ – even if we have Google on Congressional record saying they’ve found no manipulation of their platform or policy violations by RT,” Simonyan said in a statement, as quoted by RT press service, published late on Monday.

Meanwhile, Eric Schmidt has noted that Google is trying to prevent the distribution of the content of these resources, but does not want to ban the sites themselves.

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