A couple of days ago, Danny Sullivan, who is now tasked with defending Google, or as he likes to put it, explain how Google works so that people understand better when the results out of Google look wrong - same difference right? In any event, he had to explain why search suggestions for keywords like mass shootings, david hogg, black panther and so many more - why they may show fake or false search suggestions, leading people to wrong or offensive content.
Here is how Danny summed up the reason:
In short, this is what people are searching for, so the predictions show those most popular searches. Here are some of the examples showing these search suggestions from Google:But if you honestly believe most people don't search this way, then worrying about predictions makes no sense, right? Because who's really doing those searches? For our view, we want predictions to be useful, reflect real searches & improve if they aren't.â" Danny Sullivan (@dannysullivan) February 21, 2018
#Ferguson wasâ" J0nathan A1bright (@d1gi) February 21, 2018
... a lie.
... a thug.
... a hoax.
Ok, Google. pic.twitter.com/OSjvI8DWXh
"Michael Brown was"â" J0nathan A1bright (@d1gi) February 21, 2018
... a thug.
,.. not an angel.
... a criminal.
... (wasn't) a superhuman demon.
Ok. Google. #Ferguson pic.twitter.com/xkZhzEBdG4
The most recent example is of this poor kid:"Black culture is"â" J0nathan A1bright (@d1gi) February 21, 2018
... taking over America.
... the problem.
... degenerate.#NotOkGoogle pic.twitter.com/YDONExpDfU
Danny responded shortly after Google is working on it and truth is, the search suggestion for that name does seem a bit better but still calling him an actor is wrong:As @justinhendrix and @d1gi have pointed out, a Google search for David Hogg suggests "David Hogg actor" at the very top. That... does not seem optimal. Just did this in incognito window: pic.twitter.com/KhhsblnAclâ" Alex Kantrowitz (@Kantrowitz) February 22, 2018
Why here? Well, not only is it false but it is about a minor.Actually, we are indeed working on this for him and other cases. I expect some of that will be visible soon.â" Danny Sullivan (@dannysullivan) February 22, 2018
This was just two threads, Danny spent most of Wednesday responding to complaints like this on Twitter. I wonder if he enjoys this aspect of his job at Google?
Also, shouldn't Project Owl deal with some of these issues? I guess Google keeps improving what the Owl sees and understands...
Forum discussion at Twitter.