Ron Strom is commentary editor of WND, a post he took after serving as a news editor since 2000. Prior to coming on board with WND, Strom worked in politics in California. Married and the father of two homeschool graduates, he has served in leadership positions in his church, local nonprofit boards and in county government.More ↓Less ↑
A conservative political action committee has charged Google with bias, saying the popular search engine rejected the PAC’s request to run an anti-Nancy Pelosi ad that had nearly identical wording to one that slammed Rep. Tom DeLay, the Republican majority leader.
RightMarch.com says after placing the ad taking on Pelosi, the Democratic House minority leader, Google informed the group it “does not permit ad text that advocates against an individual, group or organization” and said the ad had been pulled.
Asks the RightMarch.com site: “Do you think we have a hard time fighting against the left-wing bias of the liberal mainstream media?
“Well you’re right – but it’s worse than you thought.
“Now, it turns out the people running the big search engines are liberally biased, too – and they’re CENSORING conservative search ad results!”
Google’s AdWords program places text ads in the right-hand margin of search result pages that relate to the words a user types in. So, a search for “Tom DeLay” elicits ads for mostly anti-DeLay sites.
Upon seeing one of those ads, RightMarch.com decided to place an ad using the same words but just swapping Pelosi’s name for DeLay. The ad read: “Truth about Nancy Pelosi: Learn about Pelosi’s many scandals and help us clean up the House!”
Said RightMarch.com: “That’s all we did – we took the liberal ad and changed the words to make it a conservative ad.”
Ad text advocating against any organization or person (public, private, or protected) is not permitted. Stating disagreement with or campaigning against a candidate for public office, a political party or public administration is generally permissible.
This standard applies to everyone who wants to advertise on Google, whether we agree with their viewpoint or not.
Mike Mayzel, a spokesman for Google, says both the anti-Pelosi ad and the anti-DeLay ad are gone.
“Both ads were taken down,” he told WND. “Any assertion to the contrary is false.”
The Google ad program allows advertisers to post ads before they are reviewed with the company reserving the right to pull ads deemed to violate its content policy.
It was unclear which ad came down first and whether or not RightMarch.com’s complaint caused the DeLay ad to be pulled.
“As soon as an ad is reviewed and found to be in violation of our policies, we take it down as soon as possible,” Mayzel said. “Any suggestion we would leave some ads up longer than others for reasons of political bias is false.”
As WorldNetDaily reported, Google recently announced it is getting ready to begin ranking news searches by “quality rather than simply by their date and relevance to search times,” giving preference to big news agencies such as CNN, BBC and AP.