At this point in its existence, Google can do just about anything it wants. Pump a ton of cash into medical research and cures for cancer and Parkinson’s disease? Anything is possible. Develop a way to stop our automobiles from ever running over annoying potholes again? Hopefully. Locate the world’s topless women and reveal them on Google Street View? Absolutely. Rig the 2016 presidential election through something called “Search Engine Manipulation?” Some people seem to think so.
In a recent feature for Politico, researcher Robert Epstein described experiments that he conducted with colleague Ronald E. Robertson that led them to believe that Google has the ability to sway a certain percentage of the American population’s opinion in the popular vote, ultimately affecting the outcome of the presidential election. And it’s not just America that has to worry. Google could influence and potentially rig elections across the globe. It’s a scary idea, sure, but I’m not sold. If Google can really do this, then I dare them to install Deez Nuts as the new Grand Duke of Luxembourg.
Until then, anchors Tom Storey and Briana Lane have all the details of Google’s impending political revolution on today’s episode of The Desk.