Friday, April 28, 2017

Google Makes Changes to Ranking Parameters to Delist Fake News

Google has started its  efforts against fake news and the company has publicly stated that fakes news ‘…is the most high profile’ issue that majority of the people who uses Google’s search engine encounter. A significant percentage of the average searcher’s results are either misleading, offensive or fake.
Google has outright stated that they won’t be able to  ‘fully solve’ the problem of fake news right now. People are hopeful that the company is making some progress to get rid of  the world of fake news.  It would take a lot of resources and time for Google to transform that ‘small step’ into something bigger, more long-term but it will  definitely happen in near future. Here’s how Google is fighting against fake news:
1. New Search Quality Rater Guidelines
Search is one of Google’s most important and  primary functions. Utilizing this system means that it  quality should be checked regularly. Google works around this by employing people and a complex process of  algorithms ,computation and   and experimentation. This process is checked and evaluated by real people who give Google feedback and suggestions  for their search results and this covers both quality and reliability. The ratings given by these people have no bearing when it comes to individual page rankings but they do help Google in  collecting data on the basis of quality of their searches.
Google  recently updated its Search Quality Rater Guidelines that helps evaluators in their ratings as well as guide them in finding and flagging fake news as well as low-quality websites.
Web sites or content that are flagged by Google’s evaluators include but are not limited to the following:
1.      Misleading Information
2.      Unexpected Offensive Results
3.      Hoaxes
4.      Unsupported Conspiracy Theories
Google’s goal in updating their guidelines was mainly developed to help them tune its algorithms to demote the previously noted low-quality content as well as to help them make improvements in the future and promote high quality content.
2. Ranking and Assesment Changes
Google combines and analyzes  a couple of  hundred or so signals to determine or ascertain which results or content  they should show for any given query. These signals include, but are not limited to:
1.      Freshness of content
2.      The number of times the search query appears on the page
3.      Relevance of the content
The company announced that they have adjusted and altered the signals to help the users find more authoritative pages as well as  help them demote and target  low-quality content as well as shady, shoddy and fake websites that promote fakes news or even unsupported and unverified  conspiracy theories.
3. Direct Feedback Tools
Google is all about making processes fast and precise. It doesn’t matter if it’s an everyday process or something you do for work but they want everything to be more efficient and faster. This includes their innovations and strategies for Autocomplete or even Featured Snippets to help searchers find there goal .
Lets discuss Google’s Featured Snippets, the company has clarified that the content which appears in the featured snippets is generated algorithmically and is g what people search for and is mostly available on the internet. Although, its not a perfect system so from time to time, people are treated to be as  inaccurate or unexpected search results so Google decided to try and fix this issue.Google introduced an easy way for people to report or  flag questionable content which appears in both autocomplete and the featured snippets.
The new feedback mechanism was designed to allow  users to flag content more efficiently because of the newly labeled categories. People can now accurately, precisely and directlly report to Google whenever they find sensitive or unhelpful content.
Google then added that they plan to use this feature to help them improve their algorithm in the future.

4. Greater Transparency
Google has received numerous queries and concerns these past few months because people were sometimes shown shocking or offensive, vulgar predictions that appeared on Google’s autocomplete assist. Due to this, Google said that it has improved its content policies and they had  updated them sufficiently.
People, if you have any questions about autocomplete and Google’s approach for removals, then please refer to their Help Center.
Key Takeaway
Google is certainly and consistently doing a lot of things to fight and stop fake news. These recent changes are obviously small changes but I believe that misleading or downright fake content should be devalued and ranked low if not taken down. We welcome these changes and  think that this will challenge content creators everywhere to step-up their game in order to be more authoritative and more importantly, more reputable.
What do you think about Google’s latest changes? Let’s talk about Google’s new policies in the comments section below. I would love to hear from you.

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