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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

It's Official: Google Will Do Anything Any Governing Body Tells It To

You'd think that a company as significant as Google could tell an organization as insignificant as the U.N. to go fuck itself. But, here we go again. Apparently, Google News has cut its links to a "scrappy little Web site" called the Inner City Press due to its frequent criticism of internal coruption in the U.N.

It began with an innocuous-sounding yet chilling form letter from Google to Lee, e-mailed on Feb. 8:

"We periodically review news sources, particularly following user complaints, to ensure Google News offers a high quality experience for our users," it said. "When we reviewed your site we've found that we can no longer include it in Google News."

As soon as he read it, Lee immediately suspected one thing: That someone at the UNDP had pressured Google into "de-listing" him from Google News — essentially preventing Inner City Press from being classified on Google News as a legitimate news source and from having its stories pop up when someone conducts a Google News search.

Over the last couple of years, Lee has proved to be a constant — and controversial — thorn in the U.N.'s side.

I've never read the Inner City Press. Nor had I heard of them before reading the FoxNews article. But the article goes on to describe the guy as a little off-the-wall (my paraphrase). Even if this is true, however, I can't imagine why Google would take such action without some pressure from someone or something with influence.

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