“Collaborating with ECI to enable people easily discover critical voting information”: Google

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The search engine giant also highlighted the steps to protect the integrity of elections.

Published Date – 12 March 2024, 09:37 PM


“Collaborating with ECI to enable people easily discover critical voting information”: Google


New Delhi: Google on Tuesday said that it is collaborating with the Election Commission of India (ECI) to enable people to easily discover critical voting information on ‘Google Search’.

Google said that supporting elections is a critical part of their responsibility towards users and the democratic process.


“With millions of eligible voters in India heading to the polls for the General Election in the coming months, Google is committed to supporting the election process by surfacing high-quality information to voters, safeguarding our platforms from abuse and helping people navigate AI-generated content,” Google said in its official blog.

“Voting information on Google Search and YouTube: We’re collaborating with the Election Commission of India (ECI) to enable people to easily discover critical voting information on Google Search – such as how to register and how to vote – in both English and Hindi. During election season, YouTube surfaces a variety of election information panels, including on how to register to vote, how to vote and candidate information,” it added.

Google further mentioned that for news and information related to the elections, “YouTube’s recommendation system prominently surfaces content from authoritative sources on the YouTube homepage, in search results, and the “Up Next” panel”.

“YouTube highlights high-quality content from authoritative news sources during key moments, through its Top News and Breaking News shelves, and news watch page. Moreover, we have information panels that indicate funding sources from publishers that receive public or government funding, and information panels giving topical context for topics prone to misinformation,” the official blog post read.

The search engine giant also highlighted the steps to protect the integrity of elections.

“Across Google, we have long-standing policies to keep our products and platforms safe. Our policies are enforced consistently and apply to all users, regardless of content type.Enforcing our policies and using AI models to fight abuse at scale: We have policies around demonstrably false claims that could undermine democratic processes, for example, in YouTube’s Community Guidelines and our political content policies for advertisers,” it said.

“YouTube also has long-standing policies in areas like manipulated content, incitement to violence, hate speech and harassment. We rely on a combination of human reviewers and machine learning to identify and remove content that violates our policies. Our AI models are enhancing our abuse-fighting efforts, while a dedicated team of local experts across all major Indian languages are working 24X7 to provide relevant context,” it added.

Regarding the election ads, Google said that all advertisers who wish to run election ads on their platforms will have to undergo an identity verification process, provide a pre-certificate issued by the ECI or anyone authorized by the ECI for each election ad they want to run where necessary and have in-ad disclosures that clearly show who paid for the ad.

“Additionally, we have long-standing ad policies that prohibit ads from promoting demonstrably false claims that could undermine trust or participation in elections. And to provide greater transparency, we compile all election ads in a searchable hub that provides insights on who the advertisers are, where they are located and how much is spent on the ads,” Google said.

Google also mentioned that “it is supporting Shakti, India Election Fact-Checking Collective, a consortium of news publishers and fact-checkers in India, working together to aid the early detection of online misinformation, including deepfakes, and to create a common repository that news publishers can use to tackle the challenges of misinformation at scale and helping people navigate AI-generated content”.

“With more people using artificial intelligence to create content, we are building on the ways in which we help our audiences identify AI-generated content through several new tools and policies,” the blog post read.

The Lok Sabha polls are likely to be held in April-May this year.

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