After the scandal at The New America Foundation, another journalist writes to tell his story of abuse by Google. The New America scandal ended with firing the team of Open Markets group and Barry Lynn. According to Anne-Marie Slaughter, the head of New America, the decision was made due to Lynn’s failure to abide the institution’s norms of transparency and collegiality. Now, another story resurfaces. It appears it is not the first time Google uses its influence and donations to put pressure on foundations and companies.
The New America Foundation story
The story published last week by the New York Times has Google as the antagonist and the responsible to Barry Lynn and the Open Markets Group being let go. Apparently, Lynn posted on the foundation’s website a piece in which he applauded the European Commission’s decision to give Google a 2.7 billion $ fine for privileging its price-comparison service in search results. The post was immediately removes and then republished. The head of The New America Foundation fired Lynn and even if he complained, Google, a major financer of the foundation denied any involvement.
The Forbes scandal
Another journalist, Kashmir Hill, wrote an article in which she tells her story with Google. While working at Forbes, she participated in a meeting with Google’s salespeople which cornered her to write an article encouraging people to use Plus’s +1 social button. She said she felt cornered since Google told her that if the story is not published, the Forbes articles will be harder to find on the search engine.
She published an article telling this happening and soon enough her management got a call from Google and her article was harder to find online.
It seems that Google is not afraid of using its power and influence when needed.