Google took a lot of heat last year for the role that fake news stories which ranked high in its search results may have helped sway the result of our nation’s historic 2016 election.
Now the search engine giant has a plan to fight back against fake new stories.
Cracking down on Google’s fake news problem
Google estimates that 0.25% of all searches return “offensive or clearly misleading content” on a daily basis, according to VP of Engineering Ben Gomes.
Effective immediately, here are three steps the social media giant is taking to combat that bad content.
New guidelines for search evaluation
Google uses real people to gauge the quality of search results. So the company is updating its training materials “to provide more detailed examples of low-quality webpages for raters to appropriately flag.” With the new guidelines in place, the process of pushing low-quality content down further in the search results will happen organically.
Better ways to report bad search results
The average web user will now more easily be able to flag suspect content that appears in the Featured Snippets at the top of the search results page and also in the Autocomplete feature that finishes your search term for you when you’re typing.
More transparency coming to the search process
Google is giving users a look at the nuts and bolts of Autocomplete and the removal process for anyone who’d like to see.
In addition, the How Search Works site has been updated with new info.