Technology

Google hits back at Donald Trump over claims of ‘rigged' search results

The technology giant said its search results held no bias after the US President claimed it was suppressing conservative views.

Google has denied that it uses its search results to set a political agenda after Donald Trump claimed results were “rigged” against him.

The US president had claimed via Twitter that conservative news was being suppressed from search results, but offered no evidence on how the platform was “hiding information”.

In response, Google said in a statement that its algorithms worked to promote “high-quality content” in search results, and were not motivated by any political agenda.

“When users type queries into the Google Search bar, our goal is to make sure they receive the most relevant answers in a matter of seconds. Search is not used to set a political agenda and we don’t bias our results toward any political ideology,” a spokeswoman for the firm said.

“Every year, we issue hundreds of improvements to our algorithms to ensure they surface high-quality content in response to users’ queries. We continually work to improve Google Search and we never rank search results to manipulate political sentiment.”

The exact formula of Google’s algorithms is not public knowledge, but factors such as a user’s previous search habits and location can have an impact on results, as well as other factors such as such as outlet reputation and keywords to measure and rank the order of results.

It is the latest in a string of attacks on social media firms by President Trump over claims of censoring right-wing voices.

Earlier this month, he claimed that “social media giants are silencing millions of people”, and in July the president accused Twitter of shadow banning conservative accounts on the social network, something the platform denied.

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