Exclusive documents obtained by The Daily Caller reveals that there are several conservative websites manually suppressed from the Google News section. The Daily Caller Reports: “The deceptive_news domain blacklist is going to be used by many search features to filter problematic sites that violate the good neighbor and misrepresentation policies,” the policy document says.
“The purpose of the blacklist will be to bar the sites from surfacing in any Search feature or news product. It will not cause a demotion in the organic search results or de-index them all together,” reads the policy document obtained by the Caller. What that means is that targeted sites will not be removed from the “ten blue links” portion of search results, but the blacklist applies to most of the other search features, like “top news,” “videos” or the various sidebars that are returned as search results.
In a section of the memo entitled “Eligibility for GNP [Good Neighbor Policy] enforcement,” the types of search results impacted by the policy are described:
“If your product shows any of the following, Misrep and GNP would apply to your PA.
- Shows content from users and news publishers (percieved 3P voice). Ex: UGC, News corpus, etc.
- Outputs single answers (perceived to come from the open web). Ex: Web answers, Video answers, etc.
- Shows content owned, licensed, or edited by Google (perceived to come directly from Google). Ex: Knowledge panels, News summaries, Oneboxes, Munin carousels, etc.”
A Google representative says
“Focus on the user,” said a source at Google who described the program to the Caller. “Users need to trust any content that Google shows them, whether it’s the 10 blue links or other special search results.”
The document indicates that there is, among other things, a “manual review tool” involved in maintaining the blacklist.
On the blacklist are a number of conservative sites, including Gateway Pundit, Matt Walsh’s blog, Gary North’s blog “teapartyeconomist.com,” Caroline Glick’s website, Conservative Tribune, a property of The Western Journal and the website of the American Spectator.
“You can’t trust the human judgment of Google’s Trust and Safety team,” said the source at Google with knowledge of their practices.
Requests for comment from Google’s press team have gone unreturned as of publication time.
Update: A Google spokesperson provided the following statement to the Daily Caller after this story was published: “We do not manually determine the order of any search result, nor do our algorithms or policies attempt to make any judgement on the political leanings of a website. Our Google News inclusion policies are publicly available online. They provide guidelines on content and behaviors for matters like sponsored content, deceptive practices, and more. Sites that do not adhere to these policies are not eligible to appear on news surfaces or in information boxes in Search. These policies do not impact the way these sites appear in organic blue-link Google Search results.”