• deweydecibel
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        5 months ago

        That’s not what we’re talking about. Ad blockers don’t do anything to fix Google’s search algorithm

        • @Kbobabob@lemmy.world
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          25 months ago

          I understand the post OP but I’m replying to a comment. Specifically this part…

          It just became an ad-ridden hellhole.

          • @Baku@aussie.zone
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            85 months ago

            I take it what OP meant is that a lot of the top results are ads - even if they aren’t shown as such. Like how half the crap uploaded by large youtubers these days is pretty much an ad for a specific product, although there’s no way to tell until you click onto it (unless you use sponsorblock)

          • MaggiWuerze
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            25 months ago

            The ads you see injected in your search result as “sponsored” are not the only way Googles Ad interests affect your search results. They are actively manipulating your search queries to make them point more towards their paying customers wanted result without you noticing.

        • @Steve@communick.news
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          65 months ago

          Not really no.
          Kagi has vastly more features. Most are extremely useful. Including privacy.
          And the whole “funding a bigot” complaint strikes me as kind of silly. The “partnership” is just them using the Brave search API, no different than they do Google, Bing, and a few others. I even have Brave as one of my sanity check browsers when something doesn’t work on Firefox.

            • @Steve@communick.news
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              25 months ago

              It’s silly to try to avoid doing anything that may, in some way support a bigot. They are literally everywhere. Even Gandhi was racist.

              It’s just the payment info, not the searches. And since their users are their only revenue source, because they aren’t selling ads, they have no reason to save searches.

                • @Steve@communick.news
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                  25 months ago

                  You might think that under capitalism or something, animal cruelty might be a huge problem too, but I doubt you would buy bullets with the express intent of shooting dogs. (I hope.)

                  This seems like a non-sequitur. I don’t understand your point here.

                • @wikibot@lemmy.worldB
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                  15 months ago

                  Here’s the section for the wikipedia article you mentioned in your comment:

                  = In 2017, Beale launched Infogalactic, an English-language wiki encyclopedia. The site was a fork of the contents of English Wikipedia which could be gradually edited to remove the influence of what Beale described as “the left-wing thought police who administer [Wikipedia]”. It has been described by Wired and The Washington Post as a version of Wikipedia targeted to alt-right readers.

                  to opt out, pm me ‘optout’. article | about

  • @Jeredin@lemm.ee
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    355 months ago

    I love science, like experimentally observed science or at least practical theoretical science, but Youtube tries to shove every crackpot nonsense they can at me. I watch one political thing and now they try and shove every conservative propaganda they can at me. It feels like when I was young, the internet was too much for conservitives to understand and control…not anymore. What’s the one true power conservatives have? Money. Now they’re ether buying up social companies or their CEOs left right and center - or at least bringing tech leadership into the ultra-rich fold. Where they are winning without exception, is in isolating the majority of their voters. Now, there’s no longer a shared reality and the divide seems to wide to close. Conservatives wanted brainwashed cult followers and did everything they could to make it happen. Now Idiocy seems far more real on the right with each passing year.

    • @maness300@lemmy.world
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      125 months ago

      There’s some theory on this and it goes beyond conservatives.

      Once, the internet was small enough that whatever happened on it could be seen by most users. Now, things can go viral in one ‘part’ of the internet and people in other ‘parts’ would have no idea what was going on.

      The solution to this is to recognize that the internet should be treated as more of a local place, where we interact with the communities and people we want while ignoring the ones we don’t.

      We can’t expect “the internet” to share any overarching views because there are too many people from too many places online now.

      • @Jeredin@lemm.ee
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        5 months ago

        The issue I have is that so many users are uneducated and read some disinformation, take it as truth and then vote accordingly. I don’t want to see certain things but I go out of my way to use multiple sources that are as unbiased as possible. But so many consume extremely biased propaganda and live according to that constructed view that they think is reality. I know there’s no easy answer, but the problem is clear and so long as the rich can easily take advantage of the useful idiots, it’s a struggle for progress in society…

  • @werefreeatlast@lemmy.world
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    295 months ago

    Here’s my theory… Google wants to artificially fuck up it’s search functionality. It wants to offer good performance for a fee. And it’s going to be doing that by giving it’s own AI the correct filters while at the same time tripping every other AI capable of searching the net such that the other AI results become garbage and only the Google one works correctly. Anyway that’s my conspiracy theory, fuck Google with a bunch of sharp forks.

    • @Chadus_Maximus@lemm.ee
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      5 months ago

      Or they just cannot complete with literal millions of people attempting to optimize their webpages for discovery using Google.

      • Mkengine
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        85 months ago

        If other services like kagi can offer better results they should be able as well, right?

        • Classy Hatter
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          115 months ago

          I think it’s simply a question of what are Google’s interests. Users doesn’t pay anything to Google for the service, so that’s not where Google’s interests are. Advertisers pay Google, so that’s where Google’s interests are. Google has no interests to make the search better for users, they want to make it better for advertisers.

          • @maness300@lemmy.world
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            5 months ago

            They still need to make the system appealing to users.

            If users had higher standards, then Google would have to meet those standards or lose out on business.

            • @shasta@lemm.ee
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              45 months ago

              To do that, you simply have to inform users about other available search engines and remind them again that those exist when one of their searches fails.

      • @FoxBJK@midwest.social
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        15 months ago

        And AI is just making it worse. Entire websites of SEO-optimized content can be generated in seconds now. No one will be able to keep up with all that!

    • @skarlow181@lemmy.world
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      245 months ago

      It’s much simpler than that. Google is an ad company, not a search company. SEO spam gives them ad clicks just the same as quality content, if not more so. As long as they don’t became bad enough that everybody switches to the competition, they simply don’t have to care.

      • @HessiaNerd@lemmy.world
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        25 months ago

        SEO spam gives them ad clicks

        It does? I thought the point of SEO was to show up in search results without having to pay for keyword placement.

        • @skarlow181@lemmy.world
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          5 months ago

          It’s not about the ads on Google.com, but the ads on the SEO sites themselves, those are also served by Google. Ever heard of DoubleClick? That’s also Google. If Google Search would give you good clean non-commercial sites without ads, they would lose money.

          • MaggiWuerze
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            35 months ago

            Exactly. Google has an incentive to send you to the most ad infested seo garbage, that just barely answers your search.

  • @northendtrooper@lemmy.ca
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    195 months ago

    I’m finding that LLMs are doing a better job for searching for new things. If I have a question, instead of going to google or bing I’ll goto chatGPT and ask some of that nature with some sources for further reading.

    Never would I think that I would need to use AI to answer simple search and yet here we are because the sole purpose of a search engine doesn’t really exist anymore.

    • chaogomu
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      795 months ago

      The problem is, you can’t trust ChatGPT to not lie to you.

      And since generative AI is now being used all over the place, you just can’t trust anything unless you know damn well that a human entered the info, and then that’s a coin flip.

      • @Lmaydev@programming.dev
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        95 months ago

        The newer ones search the internet and generate from the results not their training and provide sources.

        So that’s not such a worry now.

        Anyone who used ChatGPT for information and not text generation was always using it wrong.

        • @BakerBagel@midwest.social
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          135 months ago

          Except people are using LLM to generate web pages on something to get clicks. Which means LLM’s are training off of information generated by other LLM’s. It’s an ouroboros of fake information.

          • @Lmaydev@programming.dev
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            5 months ago

            But again if you use LLMs ability to understand and generate text via a search engine that doesn’t matter.

            LLMs are not supposed to give factual answers. That’s not their purpose at all.

      • @notapantsday@feddit.de
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        15 months ago

        However, I find it much easier to check if the given answer is correct, instead of having to find the answer myself.

    • @centof@lemm.ee
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      25 months ago

      Perplexity is great for this. It gives like 5 links in addition to the text answer so it is imo the best of both worlds.

  • sino
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    145 months ago

    I’m surprised in most posts I’ve read about this there wasn’t a mention of Yacy which is a P2P distributed indexer / search engine. It heavily focuses on privacy. I’ve used it in the past and it worked great for my use cases to bypass censorship. It’s still actively developed after all the years. Would definitely recommend it or try it out as an replacement. The installation and usage is fairy simply.

  • AutoTL;DRB
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    115 months ago

    This is the best summary I could come up with:


    No, it’s not just you - search engine results really are getting worse as the internet is flooded with low-effort garbage from SEO farms and affiliate link sites, a group of German researchers has concluded.

    After pouring over countless links for the past year, the team has concluded everyone complaining about Google’s declining quality seems to be correct, and things are probably only going to get worse with the advent of generative AI - just like we predicted.

    Along with that, the researchers determined that all three search engines are prone to being gamed by large-scale affiliate link spam campaigns, and their efforts to subvert such manipulation through algorithm updates have, at best, “a temporary positive effect.”

    Google even claimed in 2022 that it was updating its algorithm to prioritize “people-first content,” but as the researchers found, those efforts have been in vain as SEO experts and spam factories have simply figured out how to game the newest tweaks to the system.

    Janek Bevendorff, research assistant at Leipzig University and an author on the paper, told The Register that it’s hard to say whether there’s an easy way out of the current online search predicament in which we find ourselves.

    “Affiliate marketing itself is in part responsible for what online content looks like now,” Bevendorff said, but noted that “banning it entirely is probably not a solution,” as many authentic sites use the tactic, and SEO optimization, as an important revenue stream.


    The original article contains 748 words, the summary contains 242 words. Saved 68%. I’m a bot and I’m open source!

    • ElcaineVolta
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      325 months ago

      I use DuckDuckGo, you can configure it as your default search engine in Firefox.

      • @Z3k3@lemmy.world
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        215 months ago

        I find myself hitting the same issues with ddg as with Google. The 1st page trys to sell me the thing I want info on

      • Kraiden
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        5 months ago

        I use DDG when coding and generally find it to be a bit nicer, but from the article it sounds like they’re prone to the same issues. Anecdotally, I have noticed non-code queries do seem to be similarly crap

        ETA: You can set it as default in Chrome too, under Settings -> Search Engine

        • Victor
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          45 months ago

          I’ve turned to devdocs.io for my API documentation needs, which saves me the step of searching at all.

    • gullible
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      125 months ago

      Searx. That it doesn’t ignore operators legitimately arouses me slightly.

      • Dizzy Devil Ducky
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        15 months ago

        If I ever can’t find something I’m looking for using a Searx instance, I switch to something like StartPage temporarily.

        As great as Searx is, on very rare occasion I find myself having to switch to a different engine.

        • gullible
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          15 months ago

          That’s funny, I’m the reverse- Searx is my final solution. I don’t like costing the lovely people hosting it any more than I have to so I start with the duck. If ddg offers nothing, searx always has it.

          As an aside, are you aware that startpage was purchased some time ago? It’s owned by an ad company now.

          • Dizzy Devil Ducky
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            15 months ago

            Had absolutely no idea startpage was bought because I never keep up on this kinda stuff. Thanks for the heads-up.

    • @cozy_agent@lemmy.world
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      65 months ago

      I use DDG like others have mentioned, but I also like Perplexity, because it’s not a chat like ChatGPT, it just answers queries without trying too hard to chat to you.

    • z3rOR0ne
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      5 months ago

      I use DuckDuckGo Lite in Librewolf with Ublock and NoScript (amongst other addons). That combination used with ddg’s !bangs got me covered. No ads, not even image search (just go to ddg directly for that), just content.

      I’ve used searx through a docker container, and it’s a strong 2nd choice, but ddg lite is just easier to set up and gives better results imho.

      All said, an LLM like a local Llama and ChatGPT, can fill the gaps for very specific searches. Sadly, the modern internet takes a lot of savvy to navigate quickly and effectively.

      There’s a very good reason so many are typing in “reddit” at the ends of their searches, and that’s if their not using Chat GPT to just get them to the answer faster, and using much more computational resources to do so…it’s a big cluster fuck.

  • @lntl@lemmy.ml
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    25 months ago

    FCC should impose regulations on search providers to make searching with Google’s competition more cumbersome and less useful. You know, ‘level the playing field’

    • Classy Hatter
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      05 months ago

      I think it would be enough if other search providers would be required to give a portion of their profit from each search to Google.

      • @lntl@lemmy.ml
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        15 months ago

        sometimes i think I’m smarter than i am… you’re a goddamn genius