If you’ve ever done any online reputation management (clearing the first page of a Google search for any negative listings for an individual or corporation), you’ve surely noticed that the Google algorithm artificially boosts words like scam, criminal, prison, jail and many negative words unfairly. Not only do they push words that promote slander in their organic search, but it’s just as easy to see this synthetic promotion in their Google Instant Autosuggest feature where a drop down list of possible keyword searches are promoted to you as if they are trying to read your mind.
The fact that Google pushes defamatory words is so obvious that a company in France won a lawsuit against Google for unfairly catapulting the French word for scam (arnaque) to the top of a Google Suggest search for their company name. In an article at BigMouthMedia.com they open with this:
“A Paris court of appeal has ruled against Google in a defamation case lodged by the Centre National Privé de Formation a Distance (CNFDI) in a suit which claimed the search engine’s ‘Suggest’ feature linked the organisation to the word ‘scam’.
The Mountain View giant has been ordered to take necessary measures to remove this suggestion from its search functions, according to French legal site Legalis.net.”
Given time, I could illustrate thousands of examples, but I wouldn’t do so because it would only perpetuate the evil practice against good businesses. I will share one because the company has been a punching bag for ridicule, yet has continued to thrive for over 50 years. I refer to the Amway corporation. Personally, I think Amway has a lawsuit against Google just waiting to happen.
As of 5/28/2011, as one types into the Google search bar, the instant Google Autosuggest feature catapults the keyword phrase, “Amway Scam” in third place before you’ve even finished typing the word: Amway. Yet their own Keyword Tool says that searches for these keywords have many more searches per month (all created with a broad match search for the keyword, “Amway”):
- Amway ( 1,830,000) Monthly Broadmatch Searches for ‘Amway’
- Amway Global (74,000)
- www.amway.com (64,000)
- Amway Arena (33,100)
- Amway Products (40,500)
- Amway.com (165,000)
- Amway Center (40,500)
- Amway Scam (18,100)
Even though the keyword phrase ‘amway scam’ is at the bottom of the list, the Google algo rockets it to the 3rd position on their autosuggest feature and even in the natural search index. They do not determine this by actual search demand, they hide behind their secret sauce formula called relevance. Like Coca-Cola, Google will not reveal how they determine relevance, yet will little effort, a casual observer can see that negative words get a big boost in relevance from approximately 2 to 4 times more in comparison to actual search demand.
When sharing this discrepancy with other Google Gurus, they laugh at me when I try to make the case that this prejudged practice doesn’t help Google. They say, if the newspapers only printed positive news, then they’d go out of business. They lecture me saying Google is not really a ‘search’ business, they are an ‘advertising’ business model. Google is looking for rubberneckers who can’t drive by a minor accident on the freeway without making hundreds behind them slow down and take a look, thus allowing them time to spring their pay per click ads and other secret sales of search data to the corporate world as well as the hungry government intelligence services that are on an autopay relationship with Google. The Google experts point to hundreds of articles showing how AT&T and Google have seamlessly worked together to data farm all communication and searches in violation of the United States Constitution and turn it the info over to the Feds for a fee or favors. If you think I’m fabricating this story, just Google: ‘at&t illegal wiretapping’ or ‘google nsa’. Even Google’s CEO, Eric Schmidt, questioned, “What do you have to hide…?”
Many authorities demonstrate that Fascism, where governments and corporations become “One” to dominate the little guy, is the driving force in geopolitics in American and Global politics, but what do I know?
The bottom line is this: if you want to beat your competition if they are doing a better job than you, take your authority site and couch your position so that you are not delivering libelous content by the letter of the law, yet you destroy the companies who produce a better product, for less money with passion. That’s the Google Way.
Full disclosure: I was a full-time Amway distributor from 1989 through 1999.+Glen Woodfin