Leaked Audio Reveals Google’s Efforts to Woo Conservatives


Nitasha Tiku gets a hold of leaked audio from March in which Googlers describe their efforts to win over conservatives:

In February, The New York Times Magazine published a cover story urging regulators to break up Google because the company abuses its dominance in search to crush promising competitors. The next day, representatives from two conservative think tanks published blog posts defending Google and attacking the article’s call for antitrust enforcement. Both think tanks have received funding from Google. Both blog posts referenced studies by a professor who has received funding from Google. In one post, the study referenced was published in a quarterly journal owned by third think tank, which has also received funding from Google.
In a company-wide meeting a couple of weeks later, on March 1, Google’s public policy team described the blog posts as the fruit of Google’s efforts to build deeper relationships with conservatives, according to an audio recording of the meeting reviewed by WIRED. The recording of a contentious hour-long meeting offers a window into how Google thinks about its relationships in Washington, DC, its sensitivity to claims of political bias, and how executives explain to employees actions that some view as at odds with Google’s values.


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