A leaked Google briefing titled “The Good Censor” advises tech companies to move away from the “American tradition” of free speech if they wish to attract advertising revenue and continue global expansion.
The briefing, leaked exclusively to Breitbart News, was the product of extensive research on the part of Google. This included expert interviews with MIT Tech Review editor-in-chief Jason Pontin, Atlantic staff writer and tech critic Franklin Foer, and academic Kalev Leetaru. 35 cultural observers and 7 cultural leaders from seven countries on five continents were consulted to produce it. It can be read in full here.
The 85-page briefing admits that Google and other tech platforms have fundamentally altered their policies in response to unwelcome political events around the world, including the 2016 election and the rise of Alternative für Deutschland in Germany.
Responding to the leak, an official Google source said the document should be considered internal research, and not an official company position.
Page 14 of the document acknowledges that a few Silicon Valley tech giants now “control the majority of our conversations,” but that these platforms – including Google – must now break their initial promise to users of free speech and content neutrality.
Pages 19-21 of the briefing describe this initial support for free speech as a “utopian narrative” that has been undermined by political events including the 2016 election and the rise of the populist AfD party in Germany.
Later, on pages 66-70, the briefing explains that tech companies including Google, Facebook and Twitter initially leaned towards an “American tradition” of free speech that prioritizes “free speech for democracy, not civility.”
But it goes on to say that the same companies now embrace the “European tradition,” that favors “dignity over liberty, and civility over freedom.”
Google, argues the briefing, must move towards the European tradition and create “well-ordered spaces for safety and civility” rather than “unmediated marketplaces of ideas.”
Doing so, says the briefing, will enable Google to “respond to regulatory demands” and “maintain global expansion,” as well as “monetize content through its organization” and “protect advertisers from controversial content,” both of which will “increase revenues.”
The idea that Google needs to censor its products to gain access to global markets is most closely reflected by its development of Dragonfly, a censored search engine that would reportedly link a user’s search history to their identity and phone number, and block search queries deemed unfavorable to the Chinese government.
Read The Good Censor in full:
The Good Censor – GOOGLE LEAK by on Scribd
Allum Bokhari is the senior technology correspondent at Breitbart News. You can follow him on Twitter, Gab.ai and add him on Facebook. Email tips and suggestions to email@example.com.