Can Search Optimization Defy Free Speech?

NPR takes a look SES -- our made up acronym for the very real business of search engine suppression. "Prominent public companies including BP and Toyota spend fortunes in an effort to keep negative press about oil spills or faulty brakes far away from the first page of a Google search," NPR reports. Jon Kaufman, SVP at search optimizer Zog Media tells the news outlet: "It is an absolute game changer, and a fundamental piece of marketing for any company out there."

Meanwhile, search engine suppression is a growing part of the $2 billion search optimization industry -- not necessarily a good thing, according to NPR. "Free speech on the Internet increasingly comes down to who's able to pay for it, and which company is willing to manipulate the listings." More to the point, "Search optimization companies are often approached by fraudulent businesses -- and it's the search companies themselves that have the power to decide what should be hidden, and what should be upfront and public."
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