Reply to post: Re: Mutant 59

One solution to wreck privacy-hating websites: Flood them with bogus info using browser tools

doublelayer Silver badge

Re: Mutant 59

>>so they might make a system to make those results that you see now and immediately realize won't be useful more enticing

>All good points and I'm inclined to agree, but that one remark made me think "Isn't that what they do already anyway?" After all, Google is the ultimate clickbait engine - it's up to me to get my site//page listed at the top their rankings by whatever means necessary because very few people search beyond the first page of results and mine had, therefore, be pretty damn eye-catching.

My point was more that, if you paid google every time you clicked on a result (in order to avoid paying them for lots of useless searches), they would make all the results that showed up look good. Right now, it is the responsibility of the person doing SEO to make their search relevant. Google messes up a lot, but usually you can scan through things that aren't relevant and find the one most likely to be useful. This applies even if you just look at the first ten results from the search; I can tell that the page from the Department of Agriculture that will let me eventually download the 2014 crop report for North Dakota is not what I need if I just want the statistics on economic performance of resource extraction industries with a focus on the oil market, even if the report contains the phrase "increasing wages in the oil sector" which convinced google that it was relevant.

In a world where google makes money on my clicks, they have an incentive to make that search result useful. It will start with the helpful cause of defeating SEO and actually having more relevant searches, but it will extend to making things look better than they are. They could have a system to look at my query and only have things that they know are connected in the previews. In my previous example, the phrases "Department of Agriculture" and "Crop Report" are going to alert me that I don't need to click. Google could identify that those phrases aren't very connected to my query, so they just don't put them in the preview. Now I just have a page that looks technical and comes from a government website with "increasing wages in the oil sector" in my preview, so it will look like what I want. Then I click on it and find out what it is, so I immediately leave the page. Google doesn't care; at that point, they got my click.

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