Google will now tell users when Search results are unreliable

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Tech giant Google is going to start informing users when their search results may not be reliable. “While Google Search will always be there with the most useful results we can provide, sometimes the reliable information you’re searching for just isn’t online yet,” the company said in a blog post. “This can be particularly true for breaking news or emerging topics, when the information that’s published first may not be the most reliable,” it added.

Google says it has trained its artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms to detect when a topic is “rapidly evolving” and will include a warning on the Search page about the same. “We’ll now show a notice indicating that it may be best to check back later when more information from a wide range of sources might be available,” the company said in its post.

The move seems to be an effort to tackle rapid spread of misinformation through its platform. Google, like Facebook and other tech platforms, has been accused of spreading misinformation online in various countries. The company had started providing similar notices for search terms that may not have relevant results on the Internet last year. It has also created an “About This Result” panel, which gives users more information about the results users see. “With this additional context, you can make a more informed decision about the sites you may want to visit and what results will be most useful for you,” the company said in its post.

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The new notice will provide for breaking news scenarios, where every publication and blog is scurrying to get on top of Google’s search results. It could also help tackle publications that game search engine optimization (SEO) rules that decide which page will rank higher on Google’s Search page. Since information on the top of its search results are the most likely to be clicked, almost every publication takes steps to follow Google’s rules and game the search engine.

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