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Google - Is it time for human editing of results?

 11:13 pm on Jan 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

When is the time going to come (if ever) that Google will start to use more real humans to assist with the editing of the results in it's search engine. Surely it must be impossible to use a mathematical ranking formula to determine ranking in every single case when you have the whole world trying every trick in the book to climb over the person in front of them?



 11:23 pm on Jan 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

Last time we heard, Google had over 8k employees. What do you think they are all doing? Google already does more hand editing than most can phathom.


 11:34 pm on Jan 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

What do you think they are all doing?

Sometimes I wonder. ;)


 11:40 pm on Jan 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

I thought over 7K were employed just to count the money. )


 11:49 pm on Jan 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

Brett - I don't know the extent of their editing but my point is that currently it does not appear to be enough. I would be interested to know what % of their staff are allocated to this area.


 11:50 pm on Jan 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

They probably use machines for counting money :)


 12:07 am on Jan 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

I doubt very much that there is dedicated humans editing other than looking at Spam Reports. IF confirmed that they were infact editing sites and applying value to them i.e. choosing a site with a blue theme selling widgets over a site with a pink theme selling the same widgets, Google's credibilty as a search engine would be over. With 8K emplyees, this type of action will eventually leek. They cannot afford that.

Patrick Taylor

 12:15 am on Jan 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

Billions of pages = millions of employees. It will never happen.


 2:35 am on Jan 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

This thread is worth the read, for those who haven't already.

Human Editorial Input - about the 2006 patent [webmasterworld.com]


 3:13 am on Jan 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

I would bet 75% of the current page listings have had eyes on that site at one point or another. At a minimum, 75% of the sites in the majority of serps have had "eyes on" by a Googler at some point in their history. Dmoz has millions of sites reviewed by amatures. Imagine what a group of thousands of highly trained pro's with the right tools could do. The other 25% Google can afford to "ignore" (eg: adult, ecom one offs, misc long tail trash...)


 4:02 am on Jan 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

If they want the best search engine with the best results I think they need real eyes to keep it in check - The best sites on the web have moderators....


 4:09 am on Jan 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

I agree Brett.

The other day, MC blogged,

In the comment section Kirby Said

Try being just mom and pop who donít know how to play the Digg game, donít blog endlessly and donít go to SES or PubCon. They wonít attract many editorially given links without a little help.

MatT Cutts replied:

Kirby, there are steps that we take to try to help those Mom/Pop sites as well.

I take that reply for an indication that human review would be part of that.


 5:33 am on Jan 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

We ran a test once, small and not scientific but more than anectdotal. A search engine algorithm performs about at the level of an 11 year old kid. A twelve or thirteen year old beats it every time. So it's well past time for human editing. Especially with the massive amounts of money at stake.
But then you look at some of the results and have to wonder. Why would a search for search engine show google first at MSN.com and Yahoo?

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