Science

Google tweak aims to curb fake, misleading search results

Google tweak aims to curb fake, misleading search results”

The company said that around 0.25% of queries (of overall daily traffic) is returning "offensive or clearly misleading". The company didn't specify how many queries that really is - but the search-engine-focused news site Search Engine Land reported that Google estimated in 2015 that it handles 3 billion searches per day.

"This can sometimes lead to results that are unexpected, inaccurate or offensive", Gomes said the new system enables users to "inform us directly if you find sensitive or unhelpful content". The American company has also updated guidance to its employees who evaluate the quality of results produced by... However, if you searched using one of Google's voice assistant or smart home products and a snippet was returned, the context of the other results on a web page is missing and the service would read the snippet aloud as if that was the one true answer. As part of the changes, Google introduced a feedback option for users to report when search results are either inaccurate of offensive. He says that the problem now is the "spread of blatantly misleading, low quality, offensive or downright false information". Finally, Google is adding more information on the technology behind its Search features on its website. Google will continue to pick up misleading Facebook articles until its new search ranking protocol takes effect. The main takeaway is the change in the ranking system. Google's had some problems in the past with sites manipulating how they appear on results.

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"While our search results will never be ideal, we're as committed as always to preserving your trust and to ensuring our products continue to be useful for everyone", Gomes wrote.

Google will also update its "Search Quality Rate Guidelines", which are used by human evaluators of Google's search engine results. The feedback menus will allow users to notify Google if they feel anything that shows up in the search bar, via AutoComplete, is inappropriate.

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Gomes said Google will now make it easier for people to flag questionable content in autocomplete and the featured snippets that appear with search results.

But the fact that searches such as "Is Obama planning a coup?" - or even "Who invented stairs?" - produced such questionable results meant it had to act. Small for Google is still a potential avalanche of unwelcome content for users. "Some of the changes are already visible in terms of better results".

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"That feedback is then used to reshape the algorithms - the recipes, if you will -that Google uses".



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