[Air-l] counting google hits

Van-Couvering,EJ (pgr) E.J.Van-Couvering at lse.ac.uk
Sat Mar 5 01:07:10 PST 2005


While it is true that Google doesn't edit contents, from my research, I
think it is safe to say there is a lot underneath this "efficient
indexing" of websites.  Each search engine provider (of which there are
3-4 major ones - Google, yahoo, Microsoft, and AskJeeves) is striving
not only to produce the most efficient index of results but the most
"relevant" index of results.  This is a tricky issue - is a neo-Nazi
site the most relevant hit for the search "Jew"?  Or, more commonly,
when someone searches for "apple" do they mean the fruit or the
computer? It also means, as any search engine optimiser will tell you,
that there is a lot of very active blacklisting of sites which are
perceived to be fraudulent.  Therefore I think that a concentrated
search market is likely to be a bad thing: we may want choice in what
kind of results we think are relevant.  Certainly those who live outside
the major advertising markets are finding that their versions of the
internet are not particularly well-searched, as commerce drives the
indexing efforts of all the major engines.

Elizabeth Van Couvering
PhD student
London School of Economics, Department of Media & Communications

>From Thomas Koenig:

But Google does not edit 
the contents (safe for a few webpaes on Google itself produces), but
indexes them quite efficiently. It provides thus the infrastructure to 
effiently access all sorts of news sites. I know of no goverment or 
open-surce project, which does it more "balanced".

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