What results do users see in search engines

Video: What results do users see in search engines? Inclusion, exclusion and curation

In this presentation, professor Dirk Lewandowski explores the factors influencing the search results users encounter. Search engines aim to include high-quality content but face technical and financial limitations, resulting in only a portion of the web being indexed. Exclusion criteria include spam pages and deliberately excluded content. Studies, such as eye-tracking, have found that users primarily look at the first results, attractive graphics, and trusted brand names. Such user behaviours also impact search results. Search engine providers’ self-interests, including user satisfaction, financial gains, and competitive reasons, further influence the search results. Dirk argues that the age of search is ongoing, and new systems will complement search rather than replace it. However, dealing with an increasing amount of low-quality content and its impact on generated answers is a challenge for search engines, making curation more critical. High-quality content producers’ decisions about allowing their content to be used for training models and the proliferation of misinformation are also significant issues.

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