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Google is asking for your help to spot fake news

27 April, 2017, 02:49 | Author: Abraham Jackson
  • Fake news fightback Google’s search engine revamp to combat offensive search results

Over the last few months, Google, along with Facebook and other digital platforms, has struggled to keep hoaxes and fake news stories from appearing in search.

Google said that it will take action to reduce the amount of fake news and content that shows up in its search results.

Google is also taking steps to curb low-quality content sites from popping up at the top of the search results in favor of authoritative pages. The problem has changed its shape a little but Google is still committed towards its long-term efforts of improving upon the info displayed in any user's search results. The new solution largely has to do with the popular feature called "autocomplete", which basically provides users with several search options by predicting what they might want to look for. Now, quality raters can use more detailed tags meant to target pages that intentionally produce misleading information.

Starting today, we're making it much easier for people to directly flag content that appears in both Autocomplete predictions and Featured Snippets. Finally, Google is adding more information on the technology behind its Search features on its website.

Google named the new search engine update as "Project Owl".

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Interestingly, to counter the epidemic of fake news and inappropriate content, the Mountain View, California-based search giant will be resorting to manual monitoring (read: human assistance).

Since the United States election, several companies including Google and Facebook have taken steps to deal with false information that looks legitimate being passed through their products. "While our search results will never be flawless, we're as committed as always to preserving your trust and to ensuring our products continue to be useful for everyone". These signals have now been adjusted (not explained how?) but Google mentions that it'll now enable them to surface more authoritative pages and demote low-quality content.

Google's Ben Gomes, a veteran who's been wrestling with the intricacies of search since arriving as one of the earliest employees, believes it is now on the path to getting this right. While those people don't affect search results in real time, they do provide feedback on whether the changes to the algorithms are working, Gomes wrote. Instead, some of them involve fake news where people make things up.

What's New in Google Search? And if the boxes contain erroneous information users can directly tell the company to give feedback about the usefulness of the information. "These feedbacks would be helpful to us in improving our algorithms", Gomes added.

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