Jiva Technology

Google, Algorithms and the nature of human beings..

I’m about to embark on a one week experiment that I’m possibly going to regret: I’m switching my default search tool from Google to Bing. I’d like to make the change to DuckDuckGo, but Apple doesn’t seem to have that in the preferences (reasons on a postcard, please). You might ask yourself what’s prompted my foray into the long grass of internet search and the answer would be simple: all I see in the results is SEO’d content. It’s a downside of being a business insider. We in the business know that people are essentially lazy, that they won’t go past the first page of results and that the chances of getting any click-throughs declines rapidly as you move down the page. It’s also human nature: once people know there’s an algorithm, they’ll try to game it. Of course, Google try to stay ahead of the game by promoting original content of a certain type, but at the end of the day, it’s a computer algorithm and not a person that decides what’s good and what’s not. Google even admit as much when you look to improve the way you use search terms (see point 2). I know what you’re going to say, “it’ll be just as bad on Bing”, which is probably true, but I know that people don’t spend half as much time trying to game Bing as they do on Google.

Wish me luck and I’ll see you in a week or so…

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