10 Updates

Google Ruling: Search Is Always Biased

May 15 2014, 5:25am CDT | by

The European ruling on Google, that it must consider taking down historical facts about people and entities that they consider “irrelevant” if they ask , is of course insane. It adds to...

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10 weeks ago

Google Ruling: Search Is Always Biased

May 15 2014, 5:25am CDT | by

The European ruling on Google, that it must consider taking down historical facts about people and entities that they consider “irrelevant” if they ask , is of course insane. It adds to the evidence that legislation and rulings on technology are passed by people who simply don’t understand it. It could be useful for small businesses who’ve screwed up somehow, hospitals who’ve lost a patient through negligence – just appeal it and Google will be forced to consider hiding it from view.

Of course the items to which people object will still be online, just not traceable through Google. So someone who knows what they’re doing will be able to link to it through social networks or find it through other means, but we won’t bother the Europeans with this. I’m European myself and proud of it but guys, you’ve really messed up this time.

It does raise one misconception, though: that people have assumed they’re getting an unfiltered search in the first place. And frankly you haven’t been, for some time.

Based on your preferences

Users aren’t always aware that if they log into their account, Google will personalise a search for them. It means on the one hand that it takes account of where you are and subjects in which you’ve shown an interest before, which is generally a good thing. On the other hand I’ve known small businesses and fellow authors become suddenly crestfallen when they announce they’re on Google page one for their given subject and they know because they checked on their own computer – and someone has to tell them that they’ve reached that stage mostly because they’ve searched for their own details fifty times in the last week. It may be that the results will be different for someone else.

Armed with this information they can log out of their account and try a ‘neutral’ search to check their ranking, but even this isn’t going to be as independent as people might hope. It will be influenced by SEO and Google’s own criteria, plus changing algorithms. Only last week I was chatting to a company whose sales halved overnight because Google altered its algorithm and they fell off the search engine’s listing. Their company hadn’t changed, the quality of the product was still fine but Google had made a decision.

Nobody should doubt that Google does its best. The changes it brought in that affected my contact so badly were intended to stop people tricking the system and they worked admirably in most cases. My point is that a search on any system has to have criteria applied, and that means someone, somewhere has made decisions about these criteria on the searcher’s behalf.

Many commentators have rightly said that the new ruling in Europe is misguided. I fully agree and hope it gets overturned. However, entrepreneurs and individuals who are complaining that any right to be selective about how much of your history shows up in a search will damage Google’s complete independence is to miss an important point. As long as someone has to set parameters – and Google does a good job – there can never be any such thing as a completely objective search.

The Google Search Evolution

 
Update
10

6 weeks ago

RM47mil KWSG contributions still unclaimed

Jun 9 2014 7:54am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Cambodia's Famous Battambang Circus
KUALA LUMPUR: About RM47 million of contributions in the Teachers Provident Fund (KWSG) still remain unclaimed, the De ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
9

6 weeks ago

Gold shop lost almost RM1mil

Jun 9 2014 3:50am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Newcastle United Training Session
KANGAR: A gold shop owner lost almost RM1 million after after the safe on in his shop was broken into by robbers ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
8

6 weeks ago

Motion to debate MAS losses in Dewan Rakyat rejected

Jun 9 2014 3:39am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Federal Aviation Administration Bans All US Flights To Israel
KUALA LUMPUR: AN emergency motion to debate the losses incurred by Malaysia Airlines last year, amounting to RM1.2 billion was rejected by the Dewan Rakyat to ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
7

6 weeks ago

MH370 Tragedy: Hisham: RM27.6 mil spent on 1st phase of SAR

Jun 9 2014 2:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia spent some RM27.6 million in its first phase of the search operations for missing Malaysia Airline flight MH370, said Acting Transport Minister, Datuk Seri His ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
6

6 weeks ago

9.1m litres of diesel seized in a month

Jun 8 2014 1:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

INDIA-CHINA-DIPLOMACY-TRADE
PUTRAJAYA: The Domestic Trade, Cooperatives, and Consumerism ministry has seized some 9.1 million litres of diesel and property worth RM58 million since mounting ‘Operasi Diesel Selatan’ in the southern states la ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
5

6 weeks ago

Girl, 9, awarded RM2.78m compensation for medical negligence

Jun 6 2014 4:56am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Government Weekly Cabinet Meeting
KUALA LUMPUR: A nine-year-old girl who suffered brain damage during her birth at a government hospital was awarded over RM2.78 million in compensat ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
4

6 weeks ago

Malaysia's total trade in April up 12pc

Jun 5 2014 11:52pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's total trade in April 2014 rose by 12 per cent from a year ago to RM123.86 billion due to growing trading activities, International Trade and Industry Minis ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
3

7 weeks ago

Works Ministry to spend RM20m for upgrading works at 50 accident black spots

Jun 4 2014 11:35pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Iskandar Johor Open - Previews
JOHOR BARU: The Works Ministry will implement upgrading works at 50 accident prone locations in the country that have been identified this year involving an allocation of RM20 ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
2

7 weeks ago

Najib launches loan scheme for Ramadan traders

Jun 4 2014 10:24pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM - Day One
PUTRAJAYA: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak today launches RM45 million Ramadan ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
1

7 weeks ago

Residents bring up objection against Kidex to Suhakam

Jun 4 2014 4:49am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PETALING JAYA: A group of 20 Petaling Jaya residents held a meeting with the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) over their objection against the proposed RM2.2 billion Kinrara Damansara ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 

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