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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Google, Analytics, and the Democratic Edge

Many posts have discussed the Democrats' technological advantages over the GOPAt RedState, Ben Howe writes:
[F]ormer RNC eCampaign Director Michael Turk wrote Monday that “the frightening advantage the left has is in a less touted entity known as the Analyst Institute (AI) and a consortium of behavioral scientists” who are “concerned not only with your characteristics and voting behavior, but how they can manipulate that behavior.”
Now, combine Obama’s political campaign with Google’s near-comprehensive real-time data and the left’s behavioral analysis. What do you get? Beat.
This goes beyond just campaigns. Google likes to brag that they can detect flu outbreaks two weeks before the CDC based on search volume. Eric Schmidt once bragged that the company could predict stock market movements.
Imagine how much more could be learned if Google’s computer algorithms combined not only search data but also all of the data they get by reading everything written in or sent to Gmail and whatever you store on Google docs and Google Drive. Then imagine what Democratic voter data groups like Catalist (which launched as a for-profit operation, allowing it much more latitude in working with outside groups….or companies) could do with that data.
With a few tweaks to their algorithms Google could easily have near perfect insights into the voting behaviors and patterns of the U.S. population at large down to specific precincts, neighborhoods or even households.