Paper: The Value Implications of the “Google Paradigm” for Organizing, Distributing and Accessing Information

I am presenting this paper today at the 6th International and Interdisciplinary Conference of the Association of Internet Researchers (AOIR). The panel is titled “Search Engines – Their Politics; Their Logics”:

The Value Implications of the “Google Paradigm” for Organizing, Distributing and Accessing Information

Given the status search engines have gained as the dominant knowledge tool for accessing the wealth of information available on the Internet, it is vital to consider the value and ethical consequences of our reliance on these tools for organizing, distributing and accessing information. This paper will explore how Google’s particular information interface implicates three interrelated values of moral and ethical import: freedom from bias, privacy, and trust. The paper will close with a call to action for Google – and the search engine industry at large – to engage in value-sensitive design to ensure a place for these values as criteria by which we judge the quality and acceptability of web search engines

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