Watch now (40 mins) | Mojeek, Google and Censorship
Excellent talk - and both thought (and action) provoking - so thanks.
Searching and browsing will be huge this decade. Most of us (me included) have become 'fat, dumb and happy' w.r.t examining the right web tools we ought to be using - which in my case is inexcusable considering I spent nigh on quarter of a century selling and influencing in the tech business! Colin's observations about true ownership in nearly all burgeoning web-based activity (e.g. 'crypto') are spot on. Contrarians and deep-dive researchers have had a torrid time last few years trying to navigate through the broth to find what we need - and talks like this do at least start to give us hope. 'Decentralisation' is one of the those words like 'sustainable' and 'inclusive'. It sounds nice, but quite quickly you realise many trotting it out can be of a somewhat manipulative disposition. I am reminded during this interview, of the B.B.C Dimbleby lecture aired in late 2019 (just before the 'build back better' crew burst on stage) and it was Tim Berners Lee. Tim made some excellent observations about where the whole internet was going, but the nugget that really stuck in my mind was his assertion that it was time the individual should (and could) be empowered to create their own digital 'castle' (or words to that effect) and decide for themselves who and what came in/out of that space. Interestingly, I cannot find that lecture on B.B.C i-Player. I have run a couple of searches and it's gone (unless I've goofed - I hope I have goofed). Infrastructure ownership behind the web is actually as interesting to me as the web itself. Data centres are never talked about much. Only journalists (to my knowledge) like Adam Curtis have pulled them into the public domain. The aspects of what, where, how, who and quantity of data is being stored about all of us / what 'us' look/store and care about needs opening up to much more scrutiny and made transparent in the long term. The Facebook/Cambridge Analytica scandal was only the absolute tip of the iceberg I suspect? Anyway - sorry about the 'essay' - but this is very interesting topic to me.
Great questions from Jeffrey. Here are some references:
1) Free speech is much discussed but less so the vital freedom to seek. This blog post discusses that and includes details of how Google treats medical content and "consensus" as mentioned in the interview: https://blog.mojeek.com/2022/05/freedom-to-seek-matters.html
2) How search engines work; crawling, indexing, ranking and so on as poorly explained verbally but better explained at a high level here: https://blog.mojeek.com/2021/05/no-tracking-search-how-does-it-work.html
3) How Google-Microsoft-Apple together try to gatekeep web search: https://blog.mojeek.com/2022/05/gatekeepers-of-the-western-web.html
4) How we support search diversity: https://blog.mojeek.com/2022/02/search-choices-enable-freedom-to-seek.html
5) How to search part of the web using Mojeek Focus: https://www.mojeek.com/focus/
6) Book: Surveillance Valley - The Secret Military History of the Internet https://surveillancevalley.com/
7) For an informed, up-to-date and independent review of search engines, and some light on why many are not what they claim: https://seirdy.one/posts/2021/03/10/search-engines-with-own-indexes/