US President Donald Trump says Google’s search engine has been hiding “fair media” coverage of him and that he would address the situation.
In a pair of tweets on Tuesday, Trump says Google search results for “Trump News” show only the reporting of what he terms fake news media.
“They have it RIGGED, for me & others,” he said, blaming Google, part of Alphabet Inc, for what he said was dangerous action that promoted mainstream media outlets such as CNN and suppressed conservative political voices.
“This is a very serious situation-will be addressed!” Trump added, without offering any details.
Representatives for the White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Google disputed Trump’s claim, saying the company does not favour search results for political purposes.
“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,” Google said in a statement.
“Search is not used to set a political agenda and we don’t bias our results toward any political ideology. 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.”
Trump has long criticised news media coverage of him, frequently using the term fake news to describe critical reports. He has made social media, particularly Twitter, an integral part of his presidency. He has previously accused social media companies, which include Twitter and Facebook, of censorship.
Trump’s accusation of bias on the part of Google comes as social media companies have suspended accounts, banned certain users and removed content as they face pressure from the US Congress to police foreign propaganda and fake accounts aimed at disrupting American politics, including operations tied to Iran and Russia.
Companies such as Facebook and Twitter have also been pressed to remove conspiracy driven content and hate speech.
Tech companies have said they do not remove content for political reasons.
Some Republican US lawmakers have also raised concerns about social media companies removing content from some conservatives, and have called Twitter’s chief executive to testify before a US House of Representatives committee on September 5.
Earlier this month, Alphabet’s YouTube joined Apple and Facebook in removing some content from Infowars, a website run by conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. Jones was also temporarily suspended on Twitter.
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