Author Topic: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?  (Read 3705 times)

MMIX

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #45 on: January 31, 2017, 08:47:27 pm »
The core idea that I think needs to be spread around is that targeted results = targeted censorship.

This, so much this.
If the answer is Donald J Trump then it must have been a fucking stupid question.
Trump cultists; "and some, I assume, are good people"
Collusion??? ~ "If it truly was a nothingburger, theres nothing here, why not open the kimono?

Mesozoic Mister Nigel

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #46 on: January 31, 2017, 10:19:19 pm »
Something like this, maybe?
Im guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk, Charles Wick said. It was very complicated.


MMIX

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #47 on: January 31, 2017, 11:11:53 pm »
Love the concept. Having a problem with the colours. It makes it difficult to read the text. Ironically while that might encourage dispersal it militates against understanding.
Maybe drop the text down and make the google logo a shooting target with a bullet hole. [Yeah, I'm outside my comfort zone here]
 
If the answer is Donald J Trump then it must have been a fucking stupid question.
Trump cultists; "and some, I assume, are good people"
Collusion??? ~ "If it truly was a nothingburger, theres nothing here, why not open the kimono?

Freeky

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #48 on: January 31, 2017, 11:13:14 pm »
I was reading a thread today on Tumblr where people were discussing how how old you were on 9/11 is pretty determinate in how you view opposing viewpoints.  It became treasonous, almost, to say anything that wasn't the equivalent of "KILL ALL MUSLIMS" or whatever, and there's adults who don't remember when things didn't used to be this way, because the Bush administration was when they started getting vague ideas and impressions about politics, and then all that garbage was never addressed and people were like "No, everythings' fine" but the hateful rhetoric and knee-jerk accusations and namecalling of people who are on the other side was still a thing.

I was thinking that this, too, is a part of why people don't go looking outside their own worldview, and why Google's algorithm gives them so much business - nobody feels like a traitor by opening themselves up to another viewpoint.
If someone does the Fine, youre right, Im clearly a terrible person, Im Satan, Im the worst person alive, I should just die thing in response to criticism of their harmful behavior, they are trying to manipulate people and flip the situation around so that they look like a victim.

As a neuroscientist I have to disagree with the perception that anyone is doing mathematical modeling of cognitive intelligence, yet; intelligence as an economist defines it, yes, but economists are worlds away from actual cognition.


Although it is outside the purview of this organization to offer personal advice, we can say -- without assuming any liability -- that previous experience indicates (and recent market studies corroborate) that given the present condition of the marketplace, continuing with your present course of action is likely to result in substantial in

tyrannosaurus vex

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #49 on: January 31, 2017, 11:34:10 pm »
I find it really, really pathetic that the collective American psyche was/is so fragile that one experience -- yes, a truly terrible experience, but still just a single major event -- has shattered and drained our entire cultural reservoir of goodwill and ethical perseverance. All it took to tear down the facade of American benevolence was one day dealing with what half the planet deals with on a continuing basis. A decade and a half of spinning our wheels and doing more harm than good in the Middle East doesn't help, either. I have my own amateur theories as to how that, maybe subconsciously, plays into this "Make America Great Again" business. But whatever the effect of exposing our fundamental cowardice and petty lust for vengeance, it definitely goes hand in hand with a population retreating to the physical, emotional, and intellectual safety of the familiar.

This is a trend that possibly would have been a factor in public discourse even without the software and systems that are turbocharging it. It might be enough to (at least partly) explain why the Internet -- a system that does put us in almost direct contact with most of the rest of our species -- has pushed us farther apart rather than closer together.

So I think any response to these unconsciously self-imposed ideological echo chambers has to have a few different facets. Yes, we need to draw attention to the fact that by preferring certain information, you are necessarily excluding other, possibly more worthwhile, information. But people -- and I mean Americans because that's all I really know -- need to be reminded that the only reason "The Left" harps on and blames America as all the time is only because we believe America could choose to be all the things our propaganda claims we are. Brave, and free, and strong, and good. Because the way the systems work, even if they are somewhat amended to provide a counterbalance people's limitless ability to pursue bad information, just waking people up to the fact that that's what they're doing won't be enough. They have to be pushed, even inspired, to do something else instead.

Or something.
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Freeky

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #50 on: January 31, 2017, 11:39:08 pm »
Yeah, seems like it.
If someone does the Fine, youre right, Im clearly a terrible person, Im Satan, Im the worst person alive, I should just die thing in response to criticism of their harmful behavior, they are trying to manipulate people and flip the situation around so that they look like a victim.

As a neuroscientist I have to disagree with the perception that anyone is doing mathematical modeling of cognitive intelligence, yet; intelligence as an economist defines it, yes, but economists are worlds away from actual cognition.


Although it is outside the purview of this organization to offer personal advice, we can say -- without assuming any liability -- that previous experience indicates (and recent market studies corroborate) that given the present condition of the marketplace, continuing with your present course of action is likely to result in substantial in

00.dusk

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #51 on: February 01, 2017, 12:14:53 am »
Reading through the replies I've missed during my day-long nap...

The problem I'm seeing is that Google isn't the only one to benefit from their results algorithms. So does every online merchant from Amazon to Walmart, and the list continues all the way down to relatively small merchants. These are visible, undeniable monetary benefits.

Anecdote to outline the point: I once bought a length of pipe from speedymetals.com, for a firearms replica project's fake suppressor. (They had low shipping costs.) I now regularly see speedymetals.com results on Google searches to find good cheap bar stock of 1440 steel and so forth. That means that this relatively small supplier is getting a net benefit from Google's algorithms. I visit them more often than I should because they're quick (always top results), efficient (I can read their site layout instantly) and familiar (I know the company is good and how to navigate the site). I've bought more than I should have from them -- sacrificing an extra dollar here and there in favor of not bargain-hunting and dealing with unknown vendors. They're making money off of me, due to Google's algorithms.

So let's say you start a grassroots movement -- you have Google not understanding the problem and tons of businesses who don't understand the problem /and/ can show solid benefits from it. From small businesses to titans. And you have people who feel uneasy because they don't truly understand the problem, it just "makes sense" to them. These people will drop out of the movement. And then you have grassroots /against/ it from people who don't understand the problem, don't have any intuitive alignment with the problem, and benefit from it (see below).

I don't think there's any way to really "get rid of it" except by first destroying the monetary benefits. Something like AdBlock for search engine personalization, or the education I talked about before.

And then you have to make the end-user WANT that for some reason.

Keep in mind that echo chambers of this model are useful! They're comforting, they make it easier to find things if you have narrow interests with ambiguous jargon, they keep you in a tight-knit circle, these are things people want. You have to override these simple, short-term individual benefits in favor of a complex, long-term societal benefit. This is a tough problem. If it wasn't, anti-vaxxers would not be a thing. They certainly wouldn't be gaining popularity.

I'm uncertain of the best way to attack this. It's an uphill battle no matter how you look at it, and there's no obvious "best" approach. I'm thinking like, a meme might actually /be/ the best approach. It's not a good one still, but the other options that come to mind are worse. Play to people's paranoia and the gut-reaction to the idea of censorship/information control. Probably need to examine Trumpist rhetoric to get the best reaction out of it (the "fake news"/"secret Democrat criminal conspiracies" thing has gotten a lot of traction, more than I expected, and I'm not entirely sure why).

Mesozoic Mister Nigel

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #52 on: February 01, 2017, 12:41:18 am »
Reading through the replies I've missed during my day-long nap...

The problem I'm seeing is that Google isn't the only one to benefit from their results algorithms. So does every online merchant from Amazon to Walmart, and the list continues all the way down to relatively small merchants. These are visible, undeniable monetary benefits.

Anecdote to outline the point: I once bought a length of pipe from speedymetals.com, for a firearms replica project's fake suppressor. (They had low shipping costs.) I now regularly see speedymetals.com results on Google searches to find good cheap bar stock of 1440 steel and so forth. That means that this relatively small supplier is getting a net benefit from Google's algorithms. I visit them more often than I should because they're quick (always top results), efficient (I can read their site layout instantly) and familiar (I know the company is good and how to navigate the site). I've bought more than I should have from them -- sacrificing an extra dollar here and there in favor of not bargain-hunting and dealing with unknown vendors. They're making money off of me, due to Google's algorithms.

So let's say you start a grassroots movement -- you have Google not understanding the problem and tons of businesses who don't understand the problem /and/ can show solid benefits from it. From small businesses to titans. And you have people who feel uneasy because they don't truly understand the problem, it just "makes sense" to them. These people will drop out of the movement. And then you have grassroots /against/ it from people who don't understand the problem, don't have any intuitive alignment with the problem, and benefit from it (see below).

I don't think there's any way to really "get rid of it" except by first destroying the monetary benefits. Something like AdBlock for search engine personalization, or the education I talked about before.

And then you have to make the end-user WANT that for some reason.

Keep in mind that echo chambers of this model are useful! They're comforting, they make it easier to find things if you have narrow interests with ambiguous jargon, they keep you in a tight-knit circle, these are things people want. You have to override these simple, short-term individual benefits in favor of a complex, long-term societal benefit. This is a tough problem. If it wasn't, anti-vaxxers would not be a thing. They certainly wouldn't be gaining popularity.

I'm uncertain of the best way to attack this. It's an uphill battle no matter how you look at it, and there's no obvious "best" approach. I'm thinking like, a meme might actually /be/ the best approach. It's not a good one still, but the other options that come to mind are worse. Play to people's paranoia and the gut-reaction to the idea of censorship/information control. Probably need to examine Trumpist rhetoric to get the best reaction out of it (the "fake news"/"secret Democrat criminal conspiracies" thing has gotten a lot of traction, more than I expected, and I'm not entirely sure why).

The thing is, targeted ads are a completely separate issue from targeted search results. So, Google could still ethically reap mad ad revenue from companies that want to pay to sponsor the clearly-marked paid ads that are at the top of every search results page.
Im guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk, Charles Wick said. It was very complicated.


00.dusk

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #53 on: February 01, 2017, 02:18:15 am »
Yeah, but I'm not talking about ads. I avoid/despise ads. I understand why they're there and I don't use an adblocker most of the time, but I've never clicked an ad except by accident.

I get these links in search results for "440 stainless bar stock "1 inch by 1/2 inch"" and so forth. These are definitely search results, not ads. That could be said to be unique to me, except I know of many people it affects along the same lines -- when I played airsoft for a couple years people would notice they mainly got search results for rare airsoft guns from their favorite sites. It lead to some funny arguments, in fact. The same thing happens with videogames -- I know people who will search for, say, "Shadowrun Hong Kong", but because they only use Steam and Humble Store, the gog.com page doesn't show up. Usually, the official site is near the bottom of the first page for them.

There's definitely a monetary benefit for companies from having targeted search results.

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #54 on: February 01, 2017, 05:07:14 pm »
Yeah, but I'm not talking about ads. I avoid/despise ads. I understand why they're there and I don't use an adblocker most of the time, but I've never clicked an ad except by accident.

I get these links in search results for "440 stainless bar stock "1 inch by 1/2 inch"" and so forth. These are definitely search results, not ads. That could be said to be unique to me, except I know of many people it affects along the same lines -- when I played airsoft for a couple years people would notice they mainly got search results for rare airsoft guns from their favorite sites. It lead to some funny arguments, in fact. The same thing happens with videogames -- I know people who will search for, say, "Shadowrun Hong Kong", but because they only use Steam and Humble Store, the gog.com page doesn't show up. Usually, the official site is near the bottom of the first page for them.

There's definitely a monetary benefit for companies from having targeted search results.

Right. That is the point of targeted results, which are what we are talking about. There are targeted results, and there are sponsored results, which are also targeted, but are paid ads that are labeled "ad". They used to be labeled "sponsored" but they changed it at some point. These are usually the top four listings in the results.

I am opposed to the targeted general results, but not to the targeted paid ads because they are labeled as ads.

Targeted results make Google money indirectly. Sponsored targeted results make Google money directly.
« Last Edit: February 01, 2017, 05:10:12 pm by Mesozoic Mister Nigel »
Im guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk, Charles Wick said. It was very complicated.


00.dusk

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #55 on: February 01, 2017, 06:25:37 pm »
Right. That is the point of targeted results, which are what we are talking about. There are targeted results, and there are sponsored results, which are also targeted, but are paid ads that are labeled "ad". They used to be labeled "sponsored" but they changed it at some point. These are usually the top four listings in the results.

I am opposed to the targeted general results, but not to the targeted paid ads because they are labeled as ads.

Targeted results make Google money indirectly. Sponsored targeted results make Google money directly.

Right. I don't think we're disagreeing exactly, I think I just need to think for awhile on how best to frame the monetary side of the issue that I'm seeing.

A start might be to say this: Google doesn't make money directly from targeted search results, true. But the companies who benefit from them do directly make money from them.

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #56 on: February 01, 2017, 07:55:13 pm »
Right. That is the point of targeted results, which are what we are talking about. There are targeted results, and there are sponsored results, which are also targeted, but are paid ads that are labeled "ad". They used to be labeled "sponsored" but they changed it at some point. These are usually the top four listings in the results.

I am opposed to the targeted general results, but not to the targeted paid ads because they are labeled as ads.

Targeted results make Google money indirectly. Sponsored targeted results make Google money directly.

Right. I don't think we're disagreeing exactly, I think I just need to think for awhile on how best to frame the monetary side of the issue that I'm seeing.

A start might be to say this: Google doesn't make money directly from targeted search results, true. But the companies who benefit from them do directly make money from them.

I don't know that Google cares about that. Which is to say; Google benefits from targeted search results because users like it , which brings them more users, which brings them more ad revenue. Google is therefore motivated in that area more by user approval, and less by the presumed financial benefit to other companies. Recall that if you are searching for a product, you are likely going to spend money on that product with some company. It is irrelevant to Google which company.
Im guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk, Charles Wick said. It was very complicated.


00.dusk

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #57 on: February 01, 2017, 08:27:58 pm »
Absolutely. Now imagine those companies reacting to the death of targeted search results. Could be I'm overly paranoid, though? I don't know, my headmeats aren't cooperating to return me to the same train of thought I had last post, so I'm finding it difficult to form a coherent argument. For now, I'll concede the point and cut the threadcrapping.

Mesozoic Mister Nigel

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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #58 on: February 01, 2017, 08:55:06 pm »
Absolutely. Now imagine those companies reacting to the death of targeted search results. Could be I'm overly paranoid, though? I don't know, my headmeats aren't cooperating to return me to the same train of thought I had last post, so I'm finding it difficult to form a coherent argument. For now, I'll concede the point and cut the threadcrapping.

You might be able to make an argument that companies will be distressed by the loss of targeted search results, but you would have to examine a lot of angles to be convincing. For example, targeted results mean that a company's page is more likely to be a top result for someone who has shopped with them before. That means more exposure to current customers, but less exposure to people who have never heard of your company before. Is that advantageous? It really depends on a lot.

Then there's the question of whether those companies being dismayed has any impact on Google's bottom line. Does Google have a reason to give a fuck whether they like it? If companies feel the need to step up advertising to make up for losing targeted results, then no; quite the opposite. Would that be the case? No idea.

You aren't really crapping up the thread BTW. At least, not in my opinion. I am simply responding to point out gaps and encourage you to develop your completely relevant thought into a cohesive argument.
« Last Edit: February 01, 2017, 08:56:54 pm by Mesozoic Mister Nigel »
Im guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk, Charles Wick said. It was very complicated.


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Re: Are customized search results polarizing opinions?
« Reply #59 on: February 01, 2017, 08:58:45 pm »
Love the concept. Having a problem with the colours. It makes it difficult to read the text. Ironically while that might encourage dispersal it militates against understanding.
Maybe drop the text down and make the google logo a shooting target with a bullet hole. [Yeah, I'm outside my comfort zone here]

I just stole Google logo directly from the internet; feel free to use or modify it in any way that seems useful to you!
Im guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk, Charles Wick said. It was very complicated.