Google Chief To Testify Before U.S. House


Sundar Pichai, the Chief Executive of Google, has agreed to testify before the House Judiciary Committee of the United States later this year because of Republican concerns that the firm is biased against the conservatives. On Friday, government officials said that he will also attend a meeting with US President Donald Trump.

Republicans wanted to question Google, the search engine of Alphabet Inc, if its search algorithms are influenced by human bias. They also want to launch an investigation on issues that includes privacy, the classification of news and opinion, and how it deals with countries that have violations agains human rights.

Last Friday, Lindsay Walters, the White House spokesperson, said that Pichai met with Larry Kudlow, the economic adviser of the White House. She disclosed that the two “discussed a range of issues impacting internet platforms and the economy in general.”

The White House said that Pichai accepted an invitation to go to a White House roundtable with President Trump and some other internet stakeholders.

Kevin McCarthy, House Majority Leader said that  the Pichai met with some senior Republican lawmakers on Friday to talk about their concerns.

McCarthy informed reporters after the meeting that the meeting was considered to be “very productive” and “frank.”

He stated: “I think we’ve really shown that there is bias, which is human nature, but you have to have transparency and fairness,” McCarthy said. “As big tech’s business grows, we have not had enough transparency and that has led to an erosion of trust and, perhaps worse, harm to consumers.”

The search engine has repeatedly denied accusations of being bias against conservatives. Pichai left the meeting without comment regarding the matter.

In an internal email that was sent last week, Pichai wrote that the suggestions that Google would interfere in search results because of political reasons were “absolutely false. We do not bias our products to favour any political agenda.”

This week, the Google CEO had been scheduled to be in Asia. However, he cancelled the trip to be in Washington.

McCarthy said that the hearing is set to take place after the midterm congressional elections in November.

Earlier this month, Google came under fire from the members of both parties for refusing to send a top executive to a hearing of the Senate Intelligence Committee that included executives from Facebook Inc and Twitter Inc.

Some Republicans have also raised their concerns over the dominance of Google. Earlier this week, the Justice Department met with the state attorneys general to concentrate on the need to protect the privacy of consumers when big technology firms amass vast troves of information. However, it came to no immediate conclusions.

When asked if Republicans will aim to break up Google, McCarthy stated: “I don’t see that.”