Ex-Googler Answers Why Google Search is Worsening

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An ex-Googler named Marissa Mayer appeared on the Freakonomics podcast to discuss the subject of whether Google is getting worse. Mayer recommended that asking why Google Browse is worsening is the incorrect concern. Her description of what is wrong turns the spotlight back on the internet itself.

Why Marissa Mayer’s Viewpoint Matters

Marissa Mayer was employee # 20 at Google, overseeing engineers, becoming director of consumer web products and was a part of the three-person group that worked on developing AdWords.

Mayer worked on numerous projects, consisting of Google Images, News, Maps, and Gmail. She was at one point in charge of Local, Maps, and Place Services.

She eventually left Google to become the president and CEO of Yahoo! for five years.

There are couple of individuals worldwide with her level of specialist knowledge of and history with search, which makes her views about the present state of search of terrific interest.

Freakonomics Podcast: Is Google Worsening?

The host of the podcast started out the program by describing how in their experience Google is not as great as it used to be.

Freakonomics:

“The power of that discovery faded, as revelations do, and we all started to take Google for given.

When you needed some information, you simply typed a couple of words into the search box and, really quickly, you got the response you were searching for, generally from an authoritative source.

But today? To me, a minimum of, it doesn’t feel the very same.

My search results just do not seem as helpful.

I seem like I’m seeing more ads, more links that may as well be ads, and more links to spammy web pages.”

Marissa Mayer States Google is Just a Window

Marissa Mayer agreed that the search experience is different today.

But in her viewpoint the issue isn’t Google. The way she sees it, Google is just a window onto the Internet.

Mayer shared her viewpoint:

“I do believe the quality of the Web has actually taken a hit.

… When I started at Google, there were about 30 million web pages, so crawling them all and indexing them all was fairly simple.

It sounds like a lot, but it’s small.

Today, I believe there was one point where Google had actually seen more than a trillion URLs.”

The host of the program asked if the boost in the number of URLs is the reason search results are worse.

Mayer responded to:

“When you see the quality of your search results page go down, it’s natural to blame Google and resemble, ‘Why are they even worse?’

To me, the more intriguing and advanced thought is if you state, ‘Wait, however Google’s just a window onto the web. The real concern is, why is the web becoming worse?’ “

Why is the Web Worsening?

The host of the show went along with the idea that the issue is that the Web is worsening and, as Marissa recommended, he asked her why the web worsening.

Mayer used an explanation that deflects from Google and lays blame for bad search engine result online itself.

She discussed the reason that the web is even worse:

“I believe due to the fact that there’s a lot of economic reward for misinformation, for clicks, for purchases.

There’s a lot more scams on the internet today than there was twenty years earlier.

And I think that the web has been able to grow and establish as quickly as it has due to the fact that of less policy and since it’s so international.

However we also need to take the flipside of that.

In a relatively uncontrolled space, there’s going to be, you understand, financial mis-incentives that can sometimes break down quality.

Which does put a great deal of onus on the brokers who are browsing that info to try and get rid of that. And it’s tough.

It sort of has to be more, in my view, an ecosystem-style reaction, instead of simply a basic correction from one actor.”

Is the Problem Really the Internet?

The concept that the Internet is low quality due to the fact that it is relatively unregulated is debatable.

There are federal government firms committed to protecting customers from deceptive online activities. One example is the United States federal government Federal Trade Commission guidelines on advertising, endorsements and marketing. These guidelines are the reason why websites reveal they are making money from affiliate links.

Google itself likewise controls the Internet through its publishing standards. Failure to abide by Google’s standards can lead to exemption from the search results.

Google’s capability to control the Internet extends to the quality of content itself as evidenced by the fact that out of 8 algorithm updates in 2022, six of them were concentrated on spam, product evaluations and demoting unhelpful content.

It could be said that Google’s algorithm updates proves that Google is more concentrated on fixing Web material than it is on enhancing the innovation for returning pertinent search engine result.

That a lot of Google’s efforts is concentrated on encouraging an “ecosystem-style reaction” lines up with Marissa Mayer’s observation that the problem with search is the websites and not Google.

Is Google Browse worse due to the fact that websites today are even worse or is the problem with Google itself and they simply can’t see it?

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Listen to the Freakonomics podcast:

Is Google Worsening?

Featured image by Best SMM Panel/Asier Romero