Don’t worry New York Times, if your material isn’t trending on social media, your pal Nick Dudich can make sure it will. That is if it meets with his personal political agenda. Project Veritas (PV) just released the video NYT Part 2: Exploiting Social Media and Manipulating the News, where James O’Keefe and crew catch Dudich explaining just how he manipulates social media platforms such as Facebook and YouTube.
Dudich is the audience strategy editor for the NYT. In the first video, he makes a lot of claims – some that turned out to be false. He claimed to be the godson of former FBI director James Comey; said the government asked him to go undercover and become part of Antifa (anti-fascists) to provide information; and that he uses Facebook to discredit President Donald Trump.
Can you guess which of the above is true? Well, he is not the godson of Comey; that was proven false by his father. As for the others, who knows? Dudich’s claim about manipulating Facebook is given more credit in this second video, which proves YouTube isn’t above manipulating what’s trending.
“As an editor, I’m a gatekeeper so I can choose what goes out and what doesn’t go out,” Dudich told an undercover PV reporter. “And let’s say we wrote something about Facebook negatively … We actually just did a video about Facebook negatively, and I chose to put it in a spot that I knew wouldn’t do well.”
The video Dudich referenced was released on September 18 and is called: How Facebook is Changing Your Internet. But because he didn’t agree with the message of the video, he had it hidden so that it wouldn’t become trendy. As he said, he can put a program “at a time of the day where I knew it’d get killed.”
Not only is Dudich unethical, but he is also going against the company that pays him. According to Section 1 of the NYT’s ethical handbook:
The goal of the New York Times is to cover the news as impartially as possible and to treat readers, news sources, advertisers and others fairly and openly, and to be seen to be doing so.
Having friends in high places seems to be working out for Dudich who said: “Let’s say something ends up on the YouTube front page, the New York Times freaks out about it but they don’t know it’s just because my friends curate the front page.”
One such friend is Earnest Pettie, brand and diversity curation lead for YouTube. Dudich admitted he knew Pettie because he hired him at Fusion.
YouTube material is supposed to be controlled by algorithms, not humans. The company’s mission statement says:
“We believe everyone should have a chance to be discovered, build a business and succeed on their own terms, and that people – not gatekeepers – decide what’s popular.”
Pettie told a PV reporter that wasn’t necessarily always the case. “I work on a team that does provide some human input into a lot of the machinery of YouTube,” he said. In fact, as he had the conversation with the reporter, he said:
“In very rare cases, we will try to make up for the fact that something isn’t in the trending tab … it’s very rare … but in these cases, then we will, like, list some type of intervention to make sure that, like … to encourage the thing to be there basically.”
The reporter, who had been asking Pettie if they used such tactics to promote certain stories, asked him: “So, Comey?” referring to breaking stories about the former FBI director.
And Pettie’s response? “Yeah.”
Recently, YouTube added a news carousel which showcases trending news stories. Pettie said this “shelf” contains videos from news partners which is “legitimate news because we know that they are legitimate news organizations.” He also said the news carousel sits above the search results. Isn’t this promoting their “news partners’” videos over others?
“Well that’s why Project Veritas is never trending on YouTube!” commented greentealatte on the video’s page.
Makes sense. With people like Dudich working in primary positions that allow for such manipulation, it’s no wonder the left’s words are heard much more often. The question is, how do we stop this and make our voices heard even louder without sinking to the same slimy levels?