The Algo Masters Who Pick the Winners
 by Stephen Mahaney

A Clear and Present Danger
The Algo Masters Who Pick the Winners
— by Stephen Mahaney

When the algorithm for a globally used service of critical importance can be controlled by one person, the world has a problem. Such power being the antithesis of democracy and the very definition of dictatorship, it's a development that should have everyone sitting up and wondering WTF.

Of course I'm speaking of what Elon Musk reportedly accomplished at Twitter last month. Unhappy that a tweet by President Biden (who has 37M followers) garnered more than three times the engagement of a similar tweet by Musk (who has 128M followers), he ordered his engineers to tweak the algorithm to favor his tweets above all else.

As outrageous as that may seem, let's not get lost in the example: The real point is that:

Musk showed how easy it is for the BIG 6 online behemoths to tilt the playing field to favor whoever they want to reward.

Hello Google! ...Amazon! ...Meta! ...Bing! ...and let's welcome TikToc to this party too.

They all do it! ...and periodically they even get caught doing it.

But since this publication is primarily about SEO, I'll single out Google due to their de facto monopoly on search.

For years Google has been telling us that the "user experience" is what defines their algorithm. We all know that's B.S. It's profit that defines their algorithm. And to say anything otherwise is simply a lie.

But we can't "prove" it because the algorithm is locked away in a black box. Nobody can know for sure the degree to which Google tilts the playing field toward favoring itself and its friends. But now we DO know how EASY it is to tilt that playing field because...