The Devil’s Greatest Trick: After Canada, Could Google Throw A U.S. Election?

MUSIC • TECHNOLOGY • POLICY

There is an increasing chorus in the press wondering just how much Google could influence elections without any of us knowing it happened.  Sound crazy?  Not so much.  A leading academic has a study demonstrating its entirely possible, and seems particularly possible in tight elections or a voter population that is relatively small compared to the U.S. and highly concentrated–like Canada.  (MTP first reported this story in 2013:  Now That’s What I Call Bundling: Can Google Throw Elections?)

As Professor Robert Epstein writes in a recent Politico story:

Research I have been directing in recent years suggests that Google, Inc., has amassed far more power to control elections—indeed, to control a wide variety of opinions and beliefs—than any company in history has ever had. Google’s search algorithm can easily shift the voting preferences of undecided voters by 20 percent or more—up to 80 percent in some…

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