Google takes additional steps to limit fake and inaccurate search results

Wikitribune

Google is updating its search to demote fake news

Google announces major changes to the way it rates information to ensure only those that can be considered true make it to the search results. Google also will task 10,000 of its employees with monitoring results and flagging sites purporting propaganda, conspiracy theories and downright lies. The search engine has also updated its ranking signals to surface more authoritative pages and demote the lower-quality pages.

Google has introduced tools to allow users to directly give feedback on offensive, inappropriate or wrong autocomplete predictions, as well as information presented in the featured snippets.

At the time of the election, psychologist Robert Epstein generated a report that says Google was making changes in the search bar predictions related to Hillary Clinton to get rid of the negative terms that appeared. The new initiative includes tweaks to the algorithm used by Google to deliver search results while offering users more options to flag inappropriate content, including for "autocomplete", or the suggestions Google makes while someone is typing a search query. Google executives claimed the type of web pages categorized in this bucket are relatively small, which is a reason why the search giant hadn't addressed the issue before.

Facebook, where fake news stories and other hoaxes have widely circulated on its social network, also has been trying to stem the tide of misleading information by working with The Associated Press and other news organisations to review suspect stories and set the record straight when warranted.


With this in mind, Google is making it easier for people to offer direct feedback, improving Search ranking to prioritize the best results, and offering increased transparency regarding how its Search process works. Google has committed to not censoring the search results. "We've adjusted our signals to help surface more authoritative pages and demote low-quality content so that issues similar to the Holocaust denial results that we saw back in December are less likely to appear". Well, Google has finally come up with a solution for that too.

The search engine, Google has announced it in a blog post.

No single entity - not even one as big as Google - can eliminate fake news or bad content on the Internet. 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. Google has now made a decision to bring you in the loop and offer feedback about the content being surfaced algorithmically on the website.

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