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President Trump Says Google Searches Rigged, DFW Expert Disagrees

NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) - President Donald Trump accused Google of rigging its search results against him.

In a pair of tweets Tuesday morning the president said, "Google search results for "Trump News" shows only the viewing/reporting of Fake News Media. In other words, they have it RIGGED, for me & others, so that almost all stories & news is BAD. Fake CNN is prominent. Republican/Conservative & Fair Media is shut out. Illegal? 96% of.... results on "Trump News" are from National Left-Wing Media, very dangerous. Google & others are suppressing voices of Conservatives and hiding information and news that is good. They are controlling what we can and cannot see. This is a very serious situation-will be addressed!"

Bill Hartzer is considered one of the top experts in the country for what's called search engine optimization (SEO), the process of making a website more attractive to the search engines.

He says he doesn't believe Google itself is biased and says search results depend on the what the user types and the content that pops up. "It's a reflection of what's going on right now."

Hartzer says when you type in a key word, Google wants to provide the best search results possible.

After President Trump's tweets about Google, the company issued a statement saying in part, "...Search is not used to set a political agenda and we don't bias our results toward any political ideology .... we never rank search results to manipulate political sentiment..."

Hartzer agreed and says the blame lies elsewhere. "Not necessarily of Google. But I would put it more towards the media in general for the content, the articles, the headlines."

Since 1996, even before Google existed, Hartzer says he has helped clients land at the top of search results.

He says news organizations do the same thing and those better at it have articles that are more easily found during Google searches. "They can optimize their articles, they can put their key words in the title or heading of the article to show up better in the news research results."

President Trump often responds when someone criticizes him, and Hartzer says that keeps his name out there. "By fighting back, he's continuing the narrative whether that's positive or not. Some people see it as a positive, some people see it as a negative."

On Tuesday, White House Chief Economic Adviser Larry Kudlow said the administration is looking at whether it can regulate Google searches.

Hartzer says he believes the administrations of former Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama also investigated Google's influence.

Follow Jack on Twitter & Facebook: @cbs11jack

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