In a video interview with Project Veritas released Wednesday, a Google whistleblower comes forward publicly for the first time to warn about the tech giant’s attempts to “sculpt the information landscape” in order to promote what he suggests is a politically and ideologically biased agenda. Among the company’s alleged, Project Veritas reports, are “news blacklists,” the use of “human raters,” and, according to the whistleblower, attempts to personally “intimidate” him.
The whistleblower, Zachary Vorhies, who worked as a senior software engineer at Google, previously provided Project Veritas leaked internal documents from the company, some of which addressed alleged algorithmic bias. He has since provided hundreds more internal documents, which Project Veritas has now published, including alleged “news blacklists” and documents referencing “human raters” in determining how some content is handled. Project Veritas reports:
Among those documents is a file called “news black list site for google now.” The document, according to Vorhies, is a “black list,” which restricts certain websites from appearing on news feeds for an Android Google product. The list includes conservative and progressive websites, such as newsbusters.org and mediamatters.org. The document says that some sites are listed with or because of a “high user block rate.”
Another newly published document titled “Fringe ranking/classifer: Defining channel quality” lists an example ranking of various news sites, including CNN and FOX News. A document titled “Fake news & other fringe: Trashy recap” reveals that videos are rated by multiple “human raters.”
“I gave the documents to Project Veritas, I had been collecting the documents for over a year,” Vorhies told Project Veritas founder James O’Keefe. “And the reason why I collected these documents was because I saw something dark and nefarious going on with the company, and I realized that there were going to not only tamper with the elections, but use that tampering with the elections to essentially overthrow the United States.”
Vorhies told O’Keefe that before he had gone public, Google already figured out who he was, sending him a “cease and desist” letter reviewed by O’Keefe demanding access to the documents he obtained and information about his handling of the files. Vorhies said that he fully complied with Google’s requests, but also told them that he sent the documents to the Department of Justice Antitrust Division.
Afterward, Vorhies says, he was outed as a “leaker” by an anonymous Twitter account, which prompted him to seek legal advice and “put out a dead man’s switch,” which would trigger the release of the files he’d obtained in case he was “offed.”
“The next day, the police began looking for me in two different locations,” Vorhies told O’Keefe. Vorhies says that Google likely contacted authorities about performing a “wellness check” on him. The San Francisco Police Department confirmed to Project Veritas that a “mental health” visit was conducted at Vorhies’ residence. The incident, Vorhies alleges, is “a large way in which [Google tries to] intimidate their employees that go rogue on the company.”
Clip of the video below along with the link to the full video on Project Veritas’ site: