Recent accusations that Google unfairly filtered Republican political emails sent over Gmail have drawn criticism. The business is attempting to remedy this by advocating for a new system that would exempt these emails from being classified as spam.
Gmail is actively suppressing emails from Republicans from hitting your inbox. Straight to SPAM! This is ELECTION INTERFERENCE! Big Tech is out of CONTROL!!
— Ronny Jackson (@RonnyJacksonTX) May 9, 2022
In a document obtained by Axios, Google requested permission from the Federal Election Commission (FEC) to implement a pilot program that will prevent political campaign emails from ending up in spam folders unless users specifically choose to do so. The limitations and guidelines for Gmail are still in place, though.
Communications sent out by the “authorized candidate committees, political party committees, and leadership political action committees registered with the FEC” will be excluded from the spam rule. They must, though, adhere to Gmail’s scamming, malware, and unlawful content restrictions.
Users will ultimately decide whether or not to continue getting emails from political campaigns. When a campaign email enters a user’s inbox for the first time, the computer is programmed to display a notification. If they would like to keep receiving these emails, they will be questioned.
The filing appeared to be Google’s response to earlier allegations from the Republican party that it had unjustly flagged more GOP campaign emails than Democratic party emails. These allegations aligned with a North Carolina State University research that discovered that during the 2020 campaign, Gmail’s automated spam detection was more likely to classify emails from Republican campaigns as spam than Yahoo and Microsoft Outlook.