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Google bans Senator Collin's ads -- Google's "Free Speech" double standard

Robert Cox, the Founder and President of the Media Bloggers Association, a non-partisan professional standards group, reports that Google has blocked the running of U.S. Senator Susan Collins' ads on Google.

  •  "Internet giant Google has banned advertisements critical of, the far-left advocacy group that caused a national uproar last month when it received preferential treatment from The New York Times for its “General Betray Us” message."
  • "The ads banned by Google were placed by a firm working for Republican Sen. Susan Collins’ re-election campaign. Collins is seeking her third term."

    Google has a particularly tortured concept of "free speech" if it is willing to editorially ban Republican speech that opposes its most important and high-profile lobbying ally in the net neutrality fight.

    What will be most interesting is if liberal groups who say they support freedom of speech actually stand up for the true "principle" and not just "liberal" free speech.

    • The ACLU recently took Verizon Wireless to task for violating the free speech of NARAL -- even after Verizon within a day -- admitted the mistake, corrected their error, took action it would not occur again and accepted full responsibility.
      • Will the ACLU hold Google to the same standard?
      • Google has yet to admit its mistake, correct their error, take action to prevent its reoccurance, or accept responsibility for their censorship of free speech.
      • We'll be watching how principled you really are ACLU.
    • also took Verizon to task for the NARAL mistake and also orchestrated a blog swarm over an AT&T admitted mistake over a third-party contractor editing out language at a Pearl Jam concert. AT&T immediately admitted the mistake, took responsibilty and took action that it would not be repeated. 
      • We'll be watching to see if the political apparatus is principled about their support of free speech, even those who oppose's positions.
      • I'm not holding my breath, but I am forever optimistic and hopeful that all people will be honorable and actually stand up for what they say they believe in.     

Google's Internet censorship of a US Senator's reelection campaign ads is more evidence that Google is not a politically neutral gatekeeper of information on the Internet.

  • For more evidence on this important question, read my post on: "Is Google politically neutral? Or is Google skewing elections?"  
  • This incident adds more powerful evidence that Google is not an honest broker of the the world's "information." 

There's much more evidence that Google operates under a huge double standard, where it expects others to abide by a "high-bar" set of strict rules, yet it has a real "low-bar" standard for Google.

  • For more evidence of this point see my post: "Google's "Black Box" search engine is the opposite of "open."

Google also has a big double standard on privacy as well.

  • For more evidence on this privacy double standard see my post: "Google's hypocrisy on privacy knows no bounds."

Finally, Google also has a huge double standard when it comes to net neutrality.

  • It maintains that competitive broadband access should be common carrier regulated, but that search and browsers, obvious internet access technologies where Google and Microsoft have much greater market share than any broadband player, should not be regulated.
  • Once again, Google supports one set of rules for others and special treatment for Google.
    • For more evidence on this point, read my post: "Dismantling Google's reasons why net neutrality should not apply to Google"

Bottomline: Google's Internet censorship of United States Senator Susan Collins (R-MA) free speech and political voice -- is just one more piece of a mounting pile of evidence that Google does not expect to live by the same rules as everyone else does.

  • As I explained in detail in my full testimony opposing the Google-DoubleClick merger before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Antitrust:

    • "...the combined Google-DoubleClick will have little accountability to consumers, competition, regulators, or third-party oversight... What checks and balances would exist to Google-DoubleClick’s “web of market power” over “the world’s information?”

It really comes down to... how much are you willing to trust Google?