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Google Blocking Guns & Weapons?

Discussion in 'Tech Talk - Gadgets, Gizmos and Technology' started by Marlin Guy, Jul 4, 2012.

  1. Jul 4, 2012 #1 of 59
    Marlin Guy

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    I understand that Google is a company, and that they can choose to filter results as they see fit, but isn't this a bit of censorship as well?

    http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/2012/06/foghorn/google-censor-firearms-related-shopping-results/

    I find Google to be more than just a bit hypocritical when they rally support against SOPA on one hand and suppress search results as they see fit on the other.

    https://www.google.com/takeaction/
     
  2. Jul 4, 2012 #2 of 59
    trh

    trh This Space for Sale

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    Google Shopping will not have gun ads; you can still google guns and find stores or guns for sale.
     
  3. Jul 4, 2012 #3 of 59
    Marlin Guy

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    I understand that. I'm just pointing out their hypocrisy.
     
  4. Jul 4, 2012 #4 of 59
    Mark Holtz

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    Hmmmm..... I have a funky suspicion that Google is sucking up to a certain political affiliation... and I have a funky suspicion that I just turned this political after just FOUR POSTS. Great.....
     
  5. Jul 4, 2012 #5 of 59
    James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    The big change at Google is their shopping search going commercial. It will no longer be a search of items their crawler found on the Internet with some paid advertising --- it will be ALL paid advertising. So don't expect results in the shopping engine that are not paid ads.

    The secondary "problem" is that Google has made a business decision not to accept ads for weapons. Which means (unless someone games the system) weapons will never show up in their shopping results.

    That being said, they are a private company ... not the government. Their decision not to sell ads for weapons is not a violation of the constitution. Sure, Americans have the right to free speech and the right to bear arms ... but that protects us against the government infringing on those rights. It does not require a private company to allow all speech on their website nor require them to assist selling guns.
     
  6. Jul 4, 2012 #6 of 59
    Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Usually censorship involves government intervention.

    We don't have the right to impose ourselves on anyone else, thus the freedoms of expression... just the government isn't supposed to be able to suppress/censor.

    The example I often give is... I can make rules in my house to prevent you from doing otherwise permissible things. So, for example, while I support the right to own guns... I don't want them in my house... so if you want to visit my house, you have to leave the gun elsewhere.

    Google can certainly make the same kind of decision.
     
  7. Jul 4, 2012 #7 of 59
    trh

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    And my point is they are not suppressing search results. You'll still be able to Google "how to make a nuclear weapon" and get about 22,900,000 results in 0.49 seconds.:D
     
  8. Jul 5, 2012 #8 of 59
    Marlin Guy

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  9. Jul 5, 2012 #9 of 59
    James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    But zero results for nuclear weapons on Google Shopping. :)

    It is a shame as sporting goods is a major industry. Not only are they turning down money from gun and weapon only stores but they are limiting what Bass Pro Shops and other major retailers can list through their site.
     
  10. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    The announcement went out at the end of May. Letters went out in June. Based on the announcement it may be until August 15th until the rules are fully enforced.
     
  11. SayWhat?

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  12. mikeren1

    mikeren1 AllStar

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  13. Marlin Guy

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    The fuss is about Google going on about SOPA, waving the flag and talking about freedom, yet choosing to censor who gets to buy and sell what through their storefront.

    If Google is truly concerned over the safety of their shoppers then perhaps they should also filter beer, wine, liquor, and automobiles.
     
  14. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    You do realize this is apples vs oranges?

    I would protest if the government tried to take away the right to bear arms... but I still don't want guns in my house. Those two ideas are not in conflict.

    Google didn't want the government determining what it could and couldn't do on its Web site... they want to make those determinations and limitations themselves.
     
  15. SayWhat?

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    And SOPA had nothing to do with weapons.
     
  16. Cholly

    Cholly Old Guys Rule! DBSTalk Club

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    Once again, remember that this is a policy of Google Shopping and not a restriction of the search engine. The two are different animals. However, I just tried Google Shopping and did a search on "guns", resulting in over fifty pages of hits. It appears that gun lovers can relax for a while.
    Note: I don't intend the following to be political or controversial in nature or to offend anyone here - rather, treat it as one man's opinion, coupled with a few facts. :)
    I'm not a gun person. However, I have no problem with people who wish to legally own a handgun for protection, or own hunting rifles/shotguns if they are hunters. However, I see little value in the gun collecting hobby and the ownership of collections of military weapons. I'm fully aware of the second amendment to the U.S. Constitution: A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.. Note that the second amendment refers to a Militia. Back in the 18th century, our forefathers envisioned a loosely organized military force for the protection of the people. Wikipedia defines "militia" nicely -- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Militia
     
  17. Marlin Guy

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    The result are for airsoft items mostly. Not firearms. :nono2:
     
  18. Marlin Guy

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    And the second amendment has nothing to do with the rest of them. :nono2:
     
  19. Carl Spock

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    The Second Amendment is about the right to keep and bear firearms. It does not state nor imply a necessity to sell.

    This is not censorship. As has been pointed out, censorship is a governmental function and Google is not the government. It is not about the Second Amendment. It is instead about a business' ability to control their operation, free from outside coercion. That seems like a conservative value to me.
     
  20. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Exactly... IF Google could be legally forced to accept gun advertisements, then *that* would be a reason to get up in arms because it would be infringing upon their rights.
     

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