Politics of Search: A Decade Retrospective.
Abstract: In “Shaping theWeb:Why the Politics of Search Engines
Matters,” Introna and Nissenbaum (2000) introduced scholars to the political, as well
as technical, issues central to the development of online search engines. Since that
time, scholars have critically evaluated the role that search engines play in
structuring the scope of online information access for the rest of society, with an
emphasis on the implications for a democratic and diverseWeb. This article describes
the thought behind search engine regulation, online diversity, and information bias,
and it places these issues within the context of the technical and societal changes
that have occurred in the online search industry. The author assesses which of the
initial concerns expressed about online search engines remain relevant today and
discusses how technical changes demand a new approach to measuring online diversity and
democracy. The author concludes with a proposal to direct the research and thought in
online search going forward.