GOOGLE PREDICTIVE SEARCH UNDER FIRE OVER SICK RESULTS – Google’s predictive search literally predicts what you are searching for as you type your keywords into the search bar and works by basing what the most popular search terms are; however yesterday the Mail on Sunday revealed that certain searches were revealing some vile and sickening search results.
It was found that users typing in the phrases “Facebook video of….” would result in a number of really disturbing links including a woman being beheaded and a man sexually abusing a child.
Google is now urgently making changes after the Mail on Sunday exposed the errors of predictive search, but only goes to fuel the debate that Google is not doing enough to protect users from such vile content.
“Search queries that you see as part of autocomplete are a reflection of what people are searching for on Google, which often include widely read news headlines like this story that was reported in the Daily Mail and elsewhere.” Google
Our children are being continuously put at risk from exposure and yet Google appears to be floundering or side-stepping the issue to removing child pornography and terrorist related material from its index.
Google announced last week that it was taking measures to eradicate such material and even increased its annual funding to a Child Protection organization from £20,000 per year to £250,000.
While one of the major internet players may have removed the material it doesn’t prevent it from being posted on other websites around the world. People’s ability to share content that spreads is one of the reasons it is becoming more difficult to eradicate.
After the Mail on Sunday alerted Google it was reported that they did take immediate action and altered the predictive search function so that this particular material would not appear in the results.
While the Government has said it would question Google over the content we have to accept that the internet is still developing at a rapid pace and with billions of people online every minute of the day it is an impossible tasks of being able to track all the content that is added on a daily basis.
We definitely need greater controls but many fear that the internet, and what we view, is increasing being controlled by our Governments and that the original idea of the internet being a place for freedom of expression is being killed off.
Many organisations feel that Google and other big content players on the internet are simply not doing enough. Google earlier this month refused to include an ‘opt-out’ facility on search that would better protect children against accessing pornographic material.
The truth is that it is incredibly easy for anyone to access pornography and other sickening content online but the truth is that Google and other corporate internet companies make vast sums of money each day through the placement of advertising; most often without the advertiser actually knowing where their advertisements are being placed.
Only recently companies, such as Vodaphone, discovered their Google Ads were being distributed across terrorists’ related videos. Vodaphone made a statement saying that they were completely unaware and had little control over where Google placed its advertisements.
Currently there appears to be no real solution to the problem of eradicating vile and sickening content from the web. Until Government’s and organisations can impose stricter controls and penalties for the likes of Google indexing such material we must remain vigilant regarding our children’s activities online.
More on this story… Daily Mail
Do you think the internet is no longer safe for our children to use? Do you think that the internet is now the catalyst of sick and vile content? Please leave your comments below.