HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla., Oct. 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Mugshots.com has written a detailed response to Google's algorithm change urging company officials to thoroughly examine the issue from the public's perspective, not just that of arrestees, in an article available at http://is.gd/mugshots in the Blog category. Anyone who reads our article will undoubtedly be disturbed by the consequences for millions of Americans brought about by Google's decision to protect arrestees from embarrassment.
While individuals arrested for minor offenses or never convicted enjoy the attention of sympathetic news media, what gets lost in the emotional mix is previously a Google search also returned results showing the criminal history of individuals arrested for extremely serious crimes as well as convictions. Except in extremely limited situations discussed in our article, that's not the case anymore. Thanks to Google's algorithm change, there is now an enormous public safety blind spot that puts every person in the country at potential risk who performs a Google search on someone with a criminal history—that number is in the millions. Google's algorithm change does not discriminate; it protects and shields the sympathetic and the truly wicked alike at the expense of public safety and the ability to make meaningful informed decisions by millions of Americans.
A person's arrest, even for a minor offense and/or for which the person was never convicted, is always relevant information to the individual performing the search. That's one important piece of information people naturally want to take into consideration when making an informed decision. However, Google has made the determination for all Americans that you shouldn't have easy access to public information of an indisputable fact and undeniably relevant by intentionally concealing it.
Google is the go-to place for information. If information isn't there, it simply doesn't exist for most Internet users. It's not an overstatement to say that with its algorithm change Google has effectively hidden from public view the criminal history of most individuals arrested and convicted in this country. While arrest records are available at government websites, they almost never appear during a search of a person's name even when the person has been arrested and convicted. Prior to the algorithm change, a simple search of just about anyone with a criminal history appeared prominently in search results with a link to a website that publishes mugshots. Google cannot, with a clear conscience, now deprive millions of Americans access to vital public records with a shrug and note that they're available elsewhere.
For example, news articles have been written about a particular Illinois attorney, but if he were like most arrestees, there wouldn't be any news coverage of his arrest for stealing $1.2 million from seven clients. For potential clients performing Google searches on him now, the most relevant search result would be his BBB rating of 'A+', nothing about his arrest as was the case before the algorithm modification. Similarly, there is the case of an Ohio babysitter arrested after videotape surfaced of her raping an infant in her care. If news stories weren't written about her as is the case with most arrests, anyone performing a Google search on her wouldn't be alerted to the disgusting allegations against her since no government website with her arrest appears in the early pages of a Google search. Even though both individuals have "only" been arrested, isn't that information you'd consider relevant in deciding whether to allow them into your life? Google doesn't think so. To learn more about them and the disturbing unintended consequences of Google's decision, please read our full article.
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