Google: Bing Is Cheating, Copying Our Search Results..!!

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Google has run a sting operation that it says proves Bing has been
watching what people search for on Google, the sites they select from
Google’s results, then uses that information to improve Bing’s own
search listings. Bing doesn’t deny this.

As a result of the apparent monitoring, Bing’s relevancy is
potentially improving (or getting worse) on the back of Google’s own
work. Google likens it to the digital equivalent of Bing leaning over
during an exam and copying off of Google’s test.

“I’ve spent my career in pursuit of a good search engine,” says Amit
Singhal, a Google Fellow who oversees the search engine’s ranking
algorithm. “I’ve got no problem with a competitor developing an
innovative algorithm. But copying is not innovation, in my book.”

Bing doesn’t deny Google’s claim. Indeed, the statement that Stefan
Weitz, director of Microsoft’s Bing search engine, emailed me yesterday
as I worked on this article seems to confirm the allegation:

As you might imagine, we use multiple signals and approaches
when we think about ranking, but like the rest of the players in
this industry, we’re not going to go deep and detailed in how we do
it. Clearly, the overarching goal is to do a better job determining
the intent of the search, so we can guess at the best and most
relevant answer to a given query.

Opt-in programs like the [Bing] toolbar help us with
clickstream data, one of many input signals we and other search engines
use to help rank sites. This “Google experiment” seems like a hack to
confuse and manipulate some of these signals.

Later today, I’ll likely have a more detailed response from Bing.
Microsoft wanted to talk further after a search event it is hosting
today. More about that event, and how I came to be reporting on Google’s
findings just before it began, comes at the end of this story. But
first, here’s how Google’s investigation unfolded.



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