How Google Enables Internet Bullying

The Internet has a new twist on the sleazebag motto: “there ain’t no such thing as bad publicity”. Vitaly Borker makes it a specialty to victimize women who order eye wear from him, which generates traffic, which increases his Google search rank.

Which is why I’ll do anything to stay out of software development. It imposes analytic philosophy’s silly world view on the life-world, one in which values are like opinions, and opinions are like assholes (everyone’s got one and they mean nothing, as in the Army). The whiz kids at Google are not able in fact to distinguish between negative and positive comments because that would not only involve parsing natural language, it would involve semantics, including the semantics of irony.

Very few of these whiz kids are even good at computer science per se and in my own experience, they are strikingly anti-intellectual and dismissive of “academia” as such save as a resource for certification and letters of recommendation from professors. Although the “Google search algorithm” is a great big Secret, it’s probably like the Wizard of Oz, a fraud, that overuses quantitative measures as opposed to even deep syntactical analysis.

I’ve never worked for Google, but I have worked for several software firms that claimed to be different, to treat technical employees fairly, to give them enough time to do a quality job, and to respect their intellect. In all but one instance, I found on the first day that all that “stuff” was to be set aside for “later” because there was, in fact, a crisis, usually manufactured by a suit, that was pissing his bespoke pants because an equally ignorant customer wanted something really stupid NOW.

In the exception company, the true spirit of openness, civility, and respect for computer science (which had made the company millions) was eradicated by the greedheads at the top in a few short years. They hired the sort of people who liked to have parties and steal equipment whilst insulting other people to their face in software reviews.

These folks used the same metrics, replacing quality with quantity, as are favored in the Google search algorithm. But in a rather confusing way, the one form of quantity they professed to dislike was “verbosity”, which they confused with ability to spell and construct a complete sentence, because this type of “verbosity” tends to let the cat out of the bag.

This is why I’m glad to be a teacher and artist, and no longer in software. This is why (having experienced last August the cold fact that brutality will also be present in teaching when organized as a business) I will hustle around Hong Kong and do what it takes to meet classes on time, prepared, and willing to get quite small children on parade. This is why I am trying to make up for 35 lost years of development as an artist.

Google needs to be investigated by a Congressional committee and to divulge its search algorithm, because its search algorithm is enabling criminal behavior.

The “hacker myth” is nothing more than the hope of the late IBM mathematician Herb Grosch that there could be “white hats” in the military industrial complex that spawned the mainframe. But Grosch wound up persona non grata at IBM because he wanted IBM to make it corporate policy not to support the construction of nuclear weapons with advanced computers, and this is a non-starter in a free market with a military source of demand permanently bolted on, such as is and was the US computer business.

My Dad met American mathematician Norbert Wiener in 1948. After Wiener’s experience in the primitive world of military math in World War I, Wiener simply refused to work in defense as did Grosch.

Grosch, Wiener and hero computer scientist Edsger Dijkstra all wound up in academia because they would not pervert their art. Dijkstra’s views, however, on the military industrial complex are pretty much unrecorded, since his issue was the sloppy way in which software, inside and outside of military applications, was created.

The Google search algorithm is probably just more slop. It seems to be based on Keynes’ description of financial markets as a beauty contest in which the judges select the winner as the girl most likely to be chosen by other judges, and “legal positivism” which (mis) characterizes the law as predicting what judges will do. Both ways of “thinking” are popular with people who basically hate thinking.

No algorithm, as far as I can tell, can sense the quality in Craig’s List or the Google home page, because both sites are “negative dialectics”. That is, the low-tech appearance of Craig’s List and absence of clutter on the Google home pages are meaningful only in relation to “history”, here, the short but real history of the Web.

In the case of Craig’s list, early dishonest and overly profit-oriented sites were garish and used gizmos including animation which made them easy to hack and got in the user’s way. They ignored the large number of Internet users who would rather be going to the beach than using the Internet, who lacked a clear path to a want ad. Craig’s demonstrates that these users are best served by merely neat arrays of words.

Likewise, even if its search algorithm enables BS, at least Google’s home page keeps it simple without hiding needed information, as does the overly simplified iPod.

But no automated tool could detect these qualities.

Therefore, all you need to do is generate buzz, references to your site, and Vitaly the Jerk has succeeded by creating just enough problems for his customers. Similar practices are in place at some budget airlines which mistreat customers; for example, Spirit Airlines delayed us for 6 hours at LAX in 2003, and when we (an interesting collection of ruffians, I am first to admit) complained, Spirit called the LAPD.

The destructive, me-first ethos of the military has escaped that sector and now invades ordinary business. Vitaly Borker learned as an emigre from Stalinism and in the US that nice guys finish last, and this is the result…and, Google enables, empowers, and turbo-charges his business.

For shame, Google!

Note: I won’t put in any Tag referencing DecorMyEyes so as to minimize this creep’s hits, but search engines can scan for keywords. Can’t be helped.

Do not buy eyewear from DecorMyEyes.

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