Yasmin Green, Chief Executive of the Google subsidiary Jigsaw, said on Tuesday during the "Fighting Misinformation Online" conference that "We need to move from defense to offense" in regards to fighting misinformation online.
In past tweets uncovered by Human Event’s Jack Posobiec, Green was seen talking about online censorship and propaganda.
"With regards to online censorship, there’s a symmetry between freedom to *publish* and freedom to *consume* (One can’t exist w/o the other)," a 2013 tweet read.
Citing assistant professor at UC San Diego’s Department of Communications, Green wrote in a 2017 tweet, "One person’s activism — or education, or journalism, for that matter — is another person’s propaganda."
Green was also seen posting about the "12th Feministmas," a song based on "The 12 Days of Christmas," with lyrics including, "No victim blaming," "no body shaming," "Gender bias broken," and "a grope-free xmas party."
Green was also seen posting in 2017 about a since-deleted article regarding "The rise of weaponized AI" propaganda machines, writing, "never has such a radical, international political movement had the precision & power of this kind of propaganda tech.
According to Jigsaw’s website, "Jigsaw is a unit within Google that explores threats to open societies, and builds technology that inspires scalable solutions."
The Google division states that it is looking for "high-impact interventions" where "focusing on helping a specific group of people… makes the internet and society stronger and safer for everyone."
Topics that the unit focuses on are "disinformation," "censorship," "toxicity," and "violent extremism."
"We forecast emerging threats and explore how technology can protect individuals and societies," the website states.
The unit also releases magazines periodically, with issue themes including "Toxicity," "Violent White Supremacy," "Conspiracy Theories," and "Disinformation."
Google and Jigsaw have put out an informational website titled "Info Interventions."
"Interventions: A set of approaches, informed by behavioral science research and validated by digital experiments, to build resilience to online harms," says the site's introduction page.
The website highlights four different approaches:
"Accuracy Prompts: Refocus User Attention Towards Accuracy," which is designed to remind users to consider for themselves how accurate a piece of information is.
"Redirect Method: Interrupt Online Radicalization," which is a program aimed at "reaching individuals who are vulnerable to recruitment by violent extremist groups."
"Authorship Feedback: Promote Better Conversations," which uses "artificial intelligence to detect toxic language" and then reminds them that their words could be harmful to others.
"Prebunking: Increase Resistance to Manipulation," which aims to equip users with the knowledge and tools to refute misleading arguments on their own, allowing them to "gain resilience to being misled in the future."
This is all part of Google's continuation to ramp up its fight against "misinformation" online.
The company announced on Tuesday that it will be providing a $13.2 million grant to Poynter Institute's International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN), with the goal of launching a new "Global Fact Check Fund," in early 2023.
This will be the company's largest fact-checking grant to date.
The grant will "support [the Poynter Institute's] network of 135 fact-checking organizations from 65 countries covering over 80 languages."
"The Global Fact Check Fund will help fact-checkers to scale existing operations or launch new ones that elevate information, uplift credible sources and reduce the harm of mis- and disinformation around the globe," the company said, justifying the move by noting that "helping people to identify misinformation is a global challenge."
"The world needs fact-checking more than ever before," IFCN executive director Baybars Örsek said. "This partnership with Google and YouTube infuses financial support to global fact-checkers and is a step in the right direction."
"While there’s much work to be done," he added, "this partnership has sparked meaningful collaboration and an important step."
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