Donald Trump has blamed a lot of things and a lot of people for his bad press, from the ‘fake news media’ to, well, pretty much anyone not called Donald Trump.
It’ll often come in the form of a social media rant, as was the case when his former lawyer Michael Cohen entered a guilty plea over campaign finance law violations, and it’ll often be peppered with exclamation marks, air-quotes and/or capital letters.
Naturally, then, it has come to pass that these two strands of the President’s behaviour have come together as he has waged war on… search engines.
Here we were, foolishly thinking people knew the basics of Google results, namely that they are picked up by automated programmes called ‘spiders’ or ‘Googlebots’ and based on what people around the world are searching for en masse.
So, if you’re seeing results that don’t reflect well on you, there’s probably a reason, and that reason is probably that the opinions held by your search results are widely accepted by a fairly considerable amount of other people. The results given authority by people sharing the content, linking back to it, creating their own versions.
Has that stopped Trump claiming Google has rigged the system against him to only show bad news? Despite only really ever being a purveyor of bad news?
What do you reckon? Look, he even capped up ‘Rigged’ so you know he’s really mad about it.
Oh, and he’s even got an economic adviser “taking a look” at Google search results and associated regulation, to show just how not mad he is. Seems like an excellent us of someones time when there’s so many other things going off in America right now.
Ironically, when we now search “Trump News” on Google, the first result (at the time of writing) is a news story about Donald Trump complaining about what you see when you search “Trump News” on Google.
Others, meanwhile, have spotted Fox News articles at the top of their search results, far from the ‘left-wing media’ claims made by the President.
“Search is not used to set a political agenda and we don’t bias our results toward any political ideology,” a Google spokesperson is quoted as saying by CNN.
“We continually work to improve Google Search and we never rank search results to manipulate political sentiment.”
Perhaps President Trump can avoid negative search results by – and this might be a big ask – changing his behaviour. It’s a long-shot but hey, it just might work.