Google updates search algorithm to push down fake news

  • Google updates search algorithm to push down fake news

Google updates search algorithm to push down fake news

Google tweaked autocomplete suggestions a year ago, shortly after it became aware of the problem so things like this wouldn't happen.

Among these "signals" are factors like content age, search volumes and more. Google has sprinkled some new ingredients into its search engine in an effort to prevent bogus information and offensive suggestions from souring its results. It was from a neo-Nazi website called Stormfront, spotted back in December previous year. The search engine is changing the way that its core algorithm work in order to help weed out fake news and hate speech, according to a blog post on April 25th. A similar button will be added to the "featured snippets" section of its results pages. Last month Google was called out for pulling a number of fake news sources in Featured Snippets, including a result from a conspiracy site that claimed former president Barack Obama was planning a "communist coup". Users will be able to report misleading or offensive suggestions, allowing Google to tailor the way in which it ranks pages when results are displayed.

But even these high-profile anecdotes don't capture the scale of the problem Google faces.

The changes will be rolled out gradually, the company said. There were other examples of fake news and low quality websites that should not be appearing as top results. I say perceived because Google has to watch out for people misusing the new reporting methods.

Holocaust denial has been a particularly hard result for Google to deal with.

Only about 0.25 percent of Google's search results were being polluted with falsehoods, Gomes said. Now, Google is making its policy (which is also updated in light of its changes) public and accessible to everyone so you can see what steps it takes when Autocomplete goes wrong. Google has tweaked the search rankings, has improved the autocomplete feature, and has committed to being more transparent about Google products. "We don't expect the problem will completely disappear".

Google is seeking to be more transparent about its search practices, as well, and how its algorithms can deliver outlandish results.

The firm says it uses testers from all segments of its user base to avoid making political or biased decisions when determining ratings. Still, Fact Check was a response to users who were already searching for a given news report or "fact".

In a blog, Google said the changes should thwart attempts to abuse its algorithms that let extremists promote their content.

Google's Automcomplete and Feature Snippets have both caused controversy recently for surfacing content that has not only been inaccurate, but has upset people.