- Engineer Zachary Vorhies released hundreds of documents to Project Veritas
- He says he added a ‘dead man’s switch’ to the files in case he was ‘assassinated’
- One of the files leaked by Vorhies is a ‘news black list site for Google Now’
- He claims it is a list of the web pages Google restricts including leftist and conservative leaning websites such as Newsbusters, Media Matters, Gateway Pundit and Infowars
- Another file appears to show a ranking classifier to ‘define channel quality’
- Google sent a threatening letter to Vorhies: “they knew what I had done and that letter contained several demands”
- Video and photos show Vorhies with hands in the air, holding a cellphone, walking towards San Francisco officers after “Google called the police”
- “Google is not who they say they are,” he warns in a chat with Project Veritas
- CEO Sundar Pichai’s testified to Congress that Google is not biased in December 2018
(San Francisco) A Google insider who anonymously leaked internal documents to Project Veritas in June of 2019 revealing “algorithmic unfairness” has now gone public, alleging election manipulation and political bias, according to the controversial investigative journalism group, which published a trove of over 950 additional documents provided by former Google senior software engineer Zachary Vorhies. Vorhies decided to reveal his identity after receiving a threatening letter from Google, whom he alleges had called the San Francisco police to perform a “wellness check” on him after he anonymously leaked the initial files, and because he “saw something dark and nefarious going on with the company and I realized that they were going to not only tamper with the elections, but use that tampering with the elections to essentially overthrow the United States.”
Vorhies, who worked for the company for eight years, says he added a ‘dead man’s switch’ which would activate the files in case he was ‘killed or assassinated’.
The insider said he spoke out amid fears that the “entire election system was going to be compromised forever by this company that told the American public that it was not going to do any evil,” elaborating on his motivations:
“I gave the documents to Project Veritas, I had been collecting the documents for over a year. And the reason why I collected these documents was because I saw something dark and nefarious going on with the company and I realized that there were going to not only tamper with the elections, but use that tampering with the elections to essentially overthrow the United States.”
In June of 2019, Project Veritas published internal Google documents revealing “algorithmic unfairness.” Vorhies told Project Veritas these were documents that were widely available to full-time Google employees:
“These documents were available to every single employee within the company that was full-time. And so as a fulltime employee at the company, I just searched for some keywords and these documents started to pop up. And so once I started finding one document and started finding keywords for other documents and I would enter that in and continue this cycle until I had a treasure trove and archive of documents that clearly spelled out the system, what they’re attempting to do in very clear language.”
Shortly after the report including the “algorithmic unfairness” documents was published, Vorhies received a letter from Google containing several “demands.” Vorhies told Project Veritas that he complied with Google’s demands, which included a request for any internal Google documents he may have personally retained. Vorhies also claimed to have sent 950 documents to the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division.
After having been targeted on Twitter by an anonymous account (which Vorhies believes to belong to an undercover Google employee) that outed him as the leaker on social media, and receiving a ‘threatening’ letter ‘containing several demands,’ Vorhies was approached by law enforcement at his residence in San Francisco, California.
“Attorneys told me this is the first step in having your life ruined. They are going to come after you,” Vorhies says. “Google is not who they say they are.”
According to Vorhies, San Francisco police received a call from Google which prompted a “wellness check.”
Vorhies recalls the incident:
“They got inside the gate, the police, and they started banging on my door… And so the police decided that they were going to call in additional forces. They called in the FBI, they called in the SWAT team. And they called in a bomb squad.
“[T]his is a large way in which [Google tries to] intimidate their employees that go rogue on the company…”
Partial video of the incident was provided to Project Veritas. San Francisco police confirmed that they did receive a “mental health call,” and responded to Vorhies’ address that day.
Concerning the public, Vorhies predicts: “When they see the documents themselves they are going to be shocked and they are going to terrified. They are going to be like how can Google so blatantly lie to the American public and lie to Congress when there is a pile of evidence showing that what they are saying is untrue.”
Among the hundreds of internal documents leaked by Vorhies is one called “news black list site for Google Now” which he claims is a “black list” of certain websites restricted from appearing on news feeds for some Android Google products. The list includes a number of both conservative and leftist websites including newsbusters.org and mediamatters.org. The document states that some sites are listed because of a “high user block rate.”
Vorhies elaborates on this document to Project Veritas:
“This particular black list is showing which news sites aren’t going to show up underneath the search bar when people are searching on their Android phone. And what they are doing is that they are saying ‘ok, well, you know, Newsbusters, the Gateway Pundit, National Enquirer, Media Matters, Infowars, they’re not going to appear on their search results’.
“And they are telling people that they don’t have any blacklists, they don’t have any political ideology, they don’t have any political bias but it’s really clear that they do.
“If Google wants to have political bias and if they wanna say they have political bias that is their right as a company.
“But for them to go under oath and say that theses blacklists don’t exist, well employees like me are able to just search through the internal search engine of the company and see that they do, it is hypocritical at the least and it’s perjury at the worst.”
This directly contradicts the claims made by Google CEO Sundar Pichai when questioned by members of Congress, insisting that Google does not promote left-leaning or Democratic Party-favoring news over that of more conservative outlets or merely outlets it does not rate. In December, he painstakingly testified before Congress that the algorithms were driven by the popularity of things on the internet and not engineers or employees’s personal beliefs.
Google has repeatedly come under intense scrutiny over its algorithms and how they select what is shown to users.
Another newly published document titled “Fringe ranking/classifer: Defining channel quality” ranks various news sites, assigning each of them a score according to their level of trustworthiness. In the sample ranking shown to the right, the most trusted site appears to be the Wall Street Journal with a rating of 8.5, while the Next News Network has the least trustworthy ranking of -3.35. Alex Jones is the only other site to receive a negative rating, scoring slightly above Next News Network at -1.56. The document seemed to find network news channels of superior quality to cable news channels, ranking ABC News (8.07), PBS NewsHour (7.93), and CBS News (6.57) higher than CNN (6.0), MSNBC (5.37), and Fox News (5.20). Breitbart News (2.78) is ranked slightly higher than popular YouTube commentator Philip DeFranco (2.73), the Huffington Post (2.72), and The Young Turks (2.53), but fell below the Associated Press (6.22) and RT America (4.57).
Vorhies explains: “If people don’t fall in line with their editorial agenda, then their news articles get deboosted and deranked. And people do fall in line with their editorial agenda, then it gets boosted to the top.”
A document titled “Fake news & other fringe: Trashy recap” reveals that videos on Google’s platforms are rated by multiple “human raters.” One internal Google document labelled “coffee beans” appears to show Google employees discussing diversity hiring practices. A related internal thread of communications also shows an apparent discussion about the “coffee beans” document, where one Google employee expresses concern that the document appears to “misrepresent Google’s hiring practices in a way that could raise legal questions…”
Vorhies told Project Veritas that he hopes more Google workers will come forward to discuss the practices and abuses of big tech firms. Vorhies stated:
“My message to those that are on the fence is I released the documents. They can go in, they can see everything that Google is doing and then they can see the scale of it. Because I think that there’s a lot of engineers that have a hint that things are wrong, but they don’t understand the colossal scale that it’s at. And so for those people, I say, look at the documents, take the pulse of America, see what’s happening and come and tell the world you know what you already know to be true.”
View the full leaked documents at Project Veritas here.