As the presidential race heats up, the nagging issue of internet censorship has again dominated headlines. Fortunately for Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG,NASDAQ:GOOGL), the fierce debate has largely focused on Facebook (NASDAQ:FB). With so much discourse occurring on the social media network, Facebook makes for a great target, so to speak. However, stakeholders of Alphabet stock should at least be ready for some blowback.
After all, Alphabet’s Google is “the largest digital ads company and plays a key role in what advertisements millions of Americans see while watching YouTube, viewing search results, and across the internet about the electoral candidates, issues, and voting,” according to Business Insider contributor Tyler Sonnemaker.
Eventually, the spotlight will shine brightly on the internet giant, posing some concerns for Alphabet stock.
In a recent CNBC report, Google is “expanding its internal content moderation practices, requiring employees to more actively moderate resources they control and to go through training.” Apparently, one of the drawbacks of working from home is that people have become more comfortable sharing their political views. Further, with the heightened social tensions, many Google employees are lashing out, causing the company to impose constraints.
However, such practices add more fuel to the fire regarding conservative organizations’ complaints about content censorship. Given the divisiveness that has erupted in our nation, this conflict has the potential to disrupt Alphabet stock. Certainly, the volatility in GOOGL shares since early September has proven that no company, no matter how big or influential, is above collective investor sentiment.
Admittedly, the case for GOOGL in the near term is questionable. However, those with a patient outlook should consider taking advantage of this sizable discount.
Alphabet Stock Will Dominate Because We Let It
As someone who supports certain conservative values, I can appreciate why the idea of censorship bothers many on the right. Obviously, society favors progressive or liberal ideas. Just look at the mainstream media (not Fox News) and how they fawn over celebrities who share similar values. Plus, conservatives cannot mention taboo topics without suffering from cancel culture.
But looking at this matter objectively, Google is merely following the path of capitalism, an ideology that America and the west champions. For one thing, xenophobic speech or content simply doesn’t pay. And that’s why Google censors, for instance, alt-right personalities. It’s bad for the brand and bad for business.
More to the point, it’s hard to attract sponsors when a possibility exists that their brands appear on racist or questionable content. As former host of The Apprentice Donald Trump used to say on his show, “It’s nothing personal… it’s just business.”
In other words, you can be as vile and racist as you want on your platform. Here at Google and our subsidiaries, your presence is toxic to the bottom line.
As well, the internet behemoth has courted controversy over its censorship policies as a means to appease China. It’s the world’s worst-kept secret that tech firms like Google will do anything to get a piece of that Chinese pie. Will that permanently negate Alphabet stock in this geopolitical environment? Not a chance.
You see, Google is also applying the capitalist ethos here as well. If you want to summarize capitalism in one word, it’s profitability. You do whatever you can to pursue it. Under this definition, there is no room for social considerations. It’s all about (hello!) acquiring capital.
If conservatives cared about protecting American society, they would take pages out of the principles of socialism.
GOOGL Stock Is Merely Absorbing Political Noise
Honestly, I believe the uproar of censorship against Alphabet stock is nothing but the desperate cries of a fading demographic’s last stand. However, they tend to bark the loudest. Also, they have guns, lots of them. Naturally, this will impact GOOGL as we dive into an uncertain future.
But in the end, this is just a distraction. Just like the world didn’t come to an end when a Black man became president of the United States, this hysteria shall pass. And in each political year moving forward, the uptick in the freneticism shall gradually decline.
On one level, you must appreciate why Alphabet stock sometimes gets dragged into the political mud. Genuinely, conservative white Americans are losing their power. As a Gallup poll confirmed, church membership is down sharply in the past two decades. In addition, high-profile Christian leaders have fallen badly from grace, leading to charges of hypocrisy.
And with this pandemic mess? As Trump said himself, he deliberately downplayed the threat, even though he admitted this was serious. Put another way, conservatives are running out of people to blame. About the only whipping boy they can conjure up is China.
But even then, who sold out whom? If I may be blunt, China’s rise to power largely came to be because of big companies outsourcing work there. The phone call is coming from inside the house. And it’s capitalism on the other end of the line.
On the date of publication, Josh Enomoto did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article.
A former senior business analyst for Sony Electronics, Josh Enomoto has helped broker major contracts with Fortune Global 500 companies. Over the past several years, he has delivered unique, critical insights for the investment markets, as well as various other industries including legal, construction management, and healthcare.