On the growing, intentional uselessness of Google search results

New Google LogoAs most people are aware, Google search results are constantly changing and evolving. In the past couple of years, there has been a conscious and very deliberate shift – and not just by Google – to go from showing you what you want to see to showing you what they want you to see. Be it social network integrations (Google+, Facebook connections, twitter feeds, etc), local results, results based off of previous queries (at least this one is in an attempt to show you “relevant” information), and more. This is all old news and has been hashed to death (and to no avail).

But in the past week or so, I’ve personally picked up on a rather annoying and dramatic uptick in incidences of Google’s penchant for – much like a three year old – understanding perfectly-well what it is that you want and pointedly doing anything but that.

I am speaking of course about the dreaded “Missing: important_search_term that seems to pop up in just about every search result, with an uncanny ability of picking the most relevant keywords and conveniently “forgetting” to include them in your search. Initially, this search feature was reserved for only the most esoteric of search queries that typically turn up only a handful of results (under a few pages total) with all search terms included. In an attempt to be helpful, Google would include additional search results with some keywords removed, so as to remove the burden of extra constraints and widen the search parameters somewhat. Now? It seems like Google’s either come down with a rather bad case of human-robot transmitted alzheimer’s or else we’ve reached an all-new high when it comes to dumbing down the web (newspeak, anyone?).

Let’s take a simple example: a two-word search query. You’d assume that a two-word search query means a very high probability that each and every word1 means something, as anyone – let alone a company whose entire raison d’être depends on natural language processing – could easily tell you.

Out of complete curiosity and having not used it out of a preference for Transmission, I decided to launch Deluge.app, a once-popular torrent client, and see how it fares. Dismayed to find that all these years later, it still doesn’t support “retina” DPIs2 and set out to see if anyone cared or if this software was really as dead-in-the-water as it seemed:

Screen Shot 2016-02-22 at 4.00.37 PM

The first three results entirely omitted what is arguably the most-important of my two – only two! – keywords (and that’s only a call I would make if someone were to put a gun to my head and demand that I pick which of these virtually-equally relevant keywords was more important). The first result that Google bothered to actually look up with both keywords is exactly what we are looking for – but it was banished to fourth place thanks to Google’s overly-“intelligent” algorithm!3

Screen Shot 2016-02-22 at 4.01.34 PM

What does Google have to say on the matter?

If you use a long query, Google might ignore some of your keywords. Maybe there aren’t many results that match all your keywords or maybe some of them are redundant.

Yeah. Right. Google did this because there weren’t enough results in a search with both the keywords and it felt bad about coming back empty-handed? Let’s check: 238,000 results with both keywords included – definitely not the case. And an overlap between “deluge” and “retina”? I think not.

Unfortunately, this slippery slope of trying overly-hard to “interpret” what the user was “actually” looking for when 99% of us have already learned how to clarify that for the sake of search is only making Google’s results more-and-more useless.

Before anyone pipes up and comments about Google’s “literal search terms” option – been there, done that. I use Google because it’s smart enough to include words like “help” or “assistance” when you search “aid” or “disk” when you search “drive” or “disc” – without them, we might as well go back to the days before full-text search and when the furthest NLP research had reached was dreams of HAL 9000.

Alas, it’s 2016 and there’s still no serious competitor to Google. And I don’t mean a competitor to Google, a competitor to Google circa 2010 or even 2006 would instantly become my go-to engine. But unfortunately we have only a handful of startups re-using results harvested from the same APIs everyone but Google uses (Bing’s and sometimes Yandex’s). Maybe Wikimedia’s new search engine will be the first, but with the way search engines have gone in the past, likely not.

  1. Ideally, even punctuation – something that the world has been begging Google to offer an ability to include in the search terms since forever *cough* C++ *cough* C# *cough*, but let’s focus on features they actually offered and have since taken away for now. 

  2. Though as with most other GTK (or Qt) ports to OS X, I shouldn’t be surprised by the shoddy cross-platform GUI support. 

  3. OK, confession time: the article linked to in the fourth result – the one that says “no retina support […] Deluge” actually talks about another app’s lack of retina support on OS X, but just go with it! 

100 thoughts on “On the growing, intentional uselessness of Google search results

  1. Image the frustration of website owners whose content is now invisible in search because Google is burying it under pages of irrelevant garbage. Yes… for the very key words that people are searching for. My traffic for keywords relevant to my content has plummeted. Google serves up all sorts of unrelated or nonspecific crap instead.

  2. So true, and why is it that when I include my city and country when searching for nearby places they fill the screen with Australian and USA results?

  3. LOL This article was written in 2016. Google now much worse. Starting to see a pattern however. If 70% of the population goes in a certain direction, then Google will direct the remaining 30% in the same direction. So, it really doesn’t matter what your search terms are, Google tries to figure out which herd you belong to and just puts you there.

  4. If 70% of the population goes in a certain direction, Google will still send the whole population in the direction of the largest source of income for Google.

  5. This “feature” has been around for a few years judging by blogs like this that are years old but it has never bothered me that much until the last few months. Now I keep getting this “missing keyword” more and more so it costs me more clicks and typing to get the results I need (which seems to be a common issue with Google (and Microsoft too) lately in all their products). Not only that but the results I get are also more and more useless – previously I rarely clicked through to the 2nd page of search results, now I try all the time (but still don’t find what I need).

    Did they change something recently? (And can’t somebody write a script to fix this?)

  6. I am glad I’m not the only one screaming at my screen with despair.
    Sick of seeing clickbait pages and news appoearing above what I’m actually searching for.
    As a small business owner beginning to struggle this is infuriating.
    Google is just a money machine now and we need a serious alternative very soon.
    I feel that a proper advertising campaign for one of the other bigger players could turn the tides but it’s as though they’ve given up

  7. The comments here are more relevant than the article, which I found interesting, but being more than two years old, isn’t reflecting the worsening Google algorithm changes. As a multi-website owner I can see clearly that Google is purposely misdirecting keywords and directing search to an increasingly irrelevant list of results on the first page. Google doesn’t want the visitor to end up on the website that most closely matches their search. They want to render sites that achieve Google’s criteria. It is an absurd assumption, and it is a dictatorial rendering of the internet according to Google. It is like a spoiled brat who wants to mess things up for everyone else just so he can prove he’s in charge. Google’s algorithm changes over the past year render judgments on sites based upon dubious and absurd criteria. As to the question of a decent search alternative, I have found the duckduckgo search engine to be a viable contender, with tons more relevant results, with the bonus of not having the search engine tracking your every move. (PS I’m not affiliated with this search engine – but I’ve set up duckduckgo on all my browsers and have had an excellent search experience.)

  8. I guess the next logical step for GOOGLE, is to replace ALL of the user’s search criteria–and replace it with what GOOGLE feels the user SHOULD be searching for!

  9. This adopting the Microsoft philosophy and approach to customer requirements.

  10. Google has become a garbage search engine since the company went political. They now promote their own agenda to the point where even mundane searches are wrong.
    I just searched for ‘soft money lender’. Google returned a series of hard money lenders.
    A new search engine is needed. Bing is sometimes better than Google but it still doesnt give accurate results.

  11. Touched a nerve here! I gave up Google years ago now and went with Duckduckgo, but the problems with the search results are exactly the same. If I’m looking for a product and minus things like Ebay or Amazon, I still get results from Ebay and Amazon and the minus is ignored. This is not just frustrating. My stress levels are through the roof these days, and 95% of that is down to constantly wrangling with search engines that just ignore my terms. It’s come down to this: before the Internet came into my life, if I wanted to know something I went to the library or bought a book. I’m now seriously considering putting the brake on my habit of expecting ‘instant answers’, and either using my own (barely touched) brain, or dusting off my library card. I think we’ve seen the best of the Internet. As far as search engines go anyway, it’s now pretty much unusable.

  12. “I think we’ve seen the best of the Internet. As far as search engines go anyway, it’s now pretty much unusable.”

    Sadly, I am certain that you are totally correct in that assessment.

  13. Well, my library has dumped 98% of its source reference materials in favor of doing internet searches, which, by the way, the MSL – high tech librarians do not know how to do – not that it matters, because, as is stated here, the internet searches have become useless – or all but useless.

    Want horror? Medical research is done on the internet. You can look at the National Institutes for Health pages, and read that the researchers are oftentimes solely using internet searches. Makes you cringe.

    I have a fairly good reference library at home, but it does not contain everything. (Example: having the right plant-related book). And, the public libraries as previously stated, have ‘burned’ their source materials.

    The most recent problem with Google searches – I have not tried others – is that it is picking up only the last word in a search. Now, I’ve always been really good at choosing the wording; it no longer matters.

    Between the internet search failings, and the ‘burning’ of original source materials, frankly put: this is a frightening situation

  14. PS I agree with this comment. I mean, just get it over with.
    “Robert D. on March 11, 2019 at 12:48 pm said:
    I guess the next logical step for GOOGLE, is to replace ALL of the user’s search criteria–and replace it with what GOOGLE feels the user SHOULD be searching for!”
    –and far too many of “the general public” continue to believe every (wrong) bit of information they see.

  15. PPS and THEN, “the general public,” accepting garbage as factual, spread it. Talk about a virus. Yes. the final straw landed on my back today.

  16. Well, as vaccines do not cause autism and naturalness.com is a collection of unscientific, religious, conspiracy nutjobs, I have to support Google on this one.

  17. So sayeth the lord on the book of Hezekiah Chapter 1 & Verse 7: “Go thou unto Google Search fora on NeoSmart and defæcate thereon with screeds of drivel, for thus is your place in Heaven assured.

  18. Here is the wisdom:

    When Thor hit your head with his Holy Hammer, He did more damage than originally thought.
    You, Sir, are evidence of the growing, intentional uselessness of your particular religious beliefs.

    NURSE! The anti-delusional meds have worn off, again.

  19. Bing is crap….. let’s get that straight. I could search for “movie where guy goes to college for several years and doesn’t get degree” and things were all over the map with bing but Google knew it was Van Wilder… I code for a living. I need the intuition of Google vs bing to do my job effectively, rarely do I get what I need from Bing. I literally type Google into bing to piss off analysts….

  20. I just googled “movie where guy goes to college for several years and doesn’t get degree”, and “Van Wilder” didn’t appear in any of the search results on the first six pages.

    Surprisingly, the IMDB page for Van Wilder was the third search result when I used bing.

    I’m honestly surprised that long of a query returned even that single correct result on bing, as anything with more than three words has resulted in nothing but irrelevant garbage for a lot of years now, especially from google.

    Fifteen years ago, I was amazed at the results I’d get for pretty much every query I entered into google, and there were no modifiers or anything else needed for that, either.

    Now, I can’t stand needing to google anything, even if it is something for sale on Amazon or eBay; because even those results are terrible for brand new items, and even when I type in the exact words that appear in the amazon page that is selling it – I still get a bunch of irrelevant results, and results that look real, but send me to an irrelevant spam website.

    It’s nothing but frustration and dead ends, and I honestly feel the constant and massive amount of stress it causes me are detrimental to my health.

    I truly don’t understand why so many people keep defending such an obvious train wreck such as google has become; particularly when all it takes to realize this is to simply remember how incredible google search used to be so many years ago.

    The other comments about having seen the best of the internet come and go are absolutely correct, and the common belief that we can still rely solely on google searches for good information leaves us all in a very bad place in history, because google has been broken for a very long time, and it just keeps getting worse.

  21. Set it for English results only.
    Why does Google give me results with an offer to translate them?
    If it was in English it should not need translated into English.
    They absolutely do not care what you are looking for and so they ignore it.

  22. George Orwell warned us.
    Who controls the past controls the future.
    Who controls the present controls the past.

  23. The Orwellian references keep sounding more appropriate, that’s for sure. Google has been holding the internet hostage for way too long, and now it seems like they dont even want us to use it at all.

    Every google search is a huge waste of time, and there’s no way around it, which is absolutely terrible for so many reasons. What the hell have they done? They’ve destroyed everyone’s ability to search the web, which makes it useless, and they obviously don’t care about that one bit, the rotten bastards.

    I’ve switched to bing on my iPad, and it’s just as bad, but it’s still somehow better to not use google, because I really hate google now, and for so many reasons.

    Here’s a question I keep asking myself:

    All of the people that work for google, especially the computer whiz-kids, so to speak – what do they search the internet with? There’s no way in hell they would put up with this modern-day google that only replies with garbage, right? I mean, how could they even do their jobs with such a crappy search engine?

    Whatever they get to use, I want a piece of it, because at this point anything is better than google.

  24. My question is what is the cause of the painfully obvious decline in search? No matter what search engine I try, I get completely useless results. So this goes beyond Google. Either that or it is Google and all other search engines deploy exactly the same search algorithm.

  25. I notied this type of behavior on Amazon before I saw it on Google. You go to Amazon and try and buy a blue pencil. The first three results may be a blue penguin (which happens to be on sale!), then a couple blue pencils, then a friggin lawn mower. WTF Amazon? Are you telling me you’re so stupid that you can’t find me more results for blue pencils before you have to go 270 degrees off track and start showing me lawnmowers? I understand that you have to pay the bills, but the crappy search ability, coupled with the fact that about 75% of your reviews are OBVIOUSLY paid for by the selling company…is really starting to make me think that brick and mortar stores are really not that much less convenient.
    Google started irritating me more recently by omitting ALL the search results that I wanted, in favor of whoever must be paying them the most money. As other posters have noted – why omit one of my two search terms within the first three results? Do you really think I’m that incapable of operating a keyboard? Is it that often that my cat walks across it to do his OWN searches? WTF Google? GO back to the old days, where you were useful. You can still make billions, and not get taxed! Just give me the results that I know you know!

  26. I hate it. It used to be so liberating to search anything on google and be rewarded with near accurate content 90% of the time. Now it’s literally depressing trawling through what google wants me to view before finding even a hint of what I was searching for buried 8 pages deep in the search results.

    There was a common retort in online forums/communities back in the day that went “Google is your friend” whenever someone were asking others something..This is now a blatant, out & out LIE. Google is an obnoxious, manipulating, self centred entity and is a “friend” of no one.

  27. It’s now 2020, and I am finding this issue to have continued its downward spiral. I am a freelance editor, and I am currently editing a piece on the history of slavery in Africa. If I type in, say, anything at all related to the history of slavery in Africa, I get random pages such as:

    1) Dental websites
    2) Sites in Norwegian (I’m in America)
    3) Heisman trophy winners
    4) Cabin rental deals in Asheville, NC

    Here’s the deal . . . it’s ONLY with this topic. If I actually plug in one of the above topics, the search engine is all cool. Need a dentist? No problem. Speak Norwegian? No problem.

    Really, really frustrating.

  28. 2020, and I have noticed this pattern over the last five or more years. As other posters have pointed out, there used to be pinpoint accuracy if you knew what you were searching for. Now I find myself in frustration every time I want to look for something that hasn’t been searched for by at least 500 million other people, and isn’t on the top 10 commercial websites paying the most to the search engine company.
    It has almost become a television channel state, where you have a limited choice of what is fed to you. Finding anything older than a year, or slightly obscure, or technical or useful, is almost impossible.
    I have looked on numerous occasions and found no real alternative search engine, none which work in the traditional way of the search clause leading to a directly related result.
    It makes 99.999% of the information unreachable, which I expect is the intention.
    I don’t know why there isn’t an alternative, even on a small scale, which can provide suitably accurate results across a wide spread of pages.

  29. I ended up here because I was doing searches on different search engines to see if people believed websites that do product reviews and then have links at the bottom for sites where you can purchase the product . These websites then receive income when you buy through the link. I think that makes the review biased and want to know what others think. Every search I did, no matter how I worded it, gave back nothing but unrelated results. It’s like my question was blocked and not allowed. I’ve noticed since starting to use computers in 2006 that trying to research anything on the internet is getting worse every year. I’ve tried all the search engines I can find and now use Go Duck Go, not because it searches any better but for security reasons.

  30. I finally found a couple of alternatives that seem to give different results than google/bing, they were listed on “degoogle” on GitHub, which has a long list of ways around using anything google.
    One is called “Toki” and comes up with fairly accurate results based on keywords, like search engines used to, but occasionally has too few results due to being a smaller scale project.
    The other is “Mojeek”, which is accurate but a bit less so than Toni, but gives more results it seems. Try them both out and see if they are useful for you. I felt pretty relieved after finally being able to see some real results instead of interpreted results. One of them has an impressively detailed options page too.

  31. It is now 2019 and google has gotten so bad i no longer use it. I do a search for isopropyl alcohol and it returns totally unrelated results, and not one related to my search. For the first time I have started using other search resources.

  32. Does anyone remember when the internet was useful for information searching and not just another tool for corporatism and advertising?

    I came here because DuckDuckGo is now ignoring quotation marks. The whole reason I started using DDG was because it didn’t ignore quotation marks.

    Fuck laissez-faire capitalism. Without strong regulation, THIS dystopia is what we get.

  33. You want proof that Google completely changed its algorithm and that it’s censoring results? The only way I was able to find this article was through Bing…

  34. I would go back to 1990s-era Alta Vista or WebCrawler in a heartbeat, not to mention DogPile. Google/Bing/Yahoo/Whatever are nothing more now than just gateways for their paid advertisers. They’re not even making a real pretense at delivering actual search-engine functionality.

  35. I used Duck Duck Go to find this site. The comments hit the nail on the head. I’m exhausted trying to find what I’m looking for so I give up looking, Which I think is their plan as the things I search for go against mainstream thinking…or in other words, what google and Glaxoklinesmith, and the Democratic party would like me to be thinking. Google is totally corrupt and they couldn’t care less for the masses who l they think are just retail-buying robots. Sorry, Google, people are more than animals and masses. We are made in the image of God and have innate desires for freedom and justice.

  36. Oh, GOOD – here come the right-wing Republican Christo-fascist idiots, now.

  37. I use startpage mostly. I use english often but swedish for more lokal results. I am not interested in what the suckers discuss on social networks or what ebay or amazon wants to sell. If I look for a product I prefer real shops it doesn’t matter if I have to take a bus ride. What is the point of urbanisation if there are no shops just pollution? I use internet search for knowledge, entertainment as movies, music, hockey results etc. Internet gets worse and worse.I use an adblocker and the best browsers for android like brave and others.

  38. It’s now almost the month of June in the year 2,020, and Google’s search result some have somehow continued to grow worse. I give up in anger for the vast majority of my searches, and pretty much just waste all my time simply attempting to google anything now.

    I’d liken today’s google “search” to some sort of terrible joke, but this is just sad. It’s also disgusting, and deplorable, and infuriating, and nonsensical that google would destroy the entire planet’s ability to actually find something on the internet that’s even just approaching a specific subject.

    Quotations never worked satisfactorily, and they’ve been useless for several years, now. Don’t even talk about “verbatim” search, because that never worked correctly even once.

    So many people act like you’ve got to “know how to use google correctly”, and then they’ll say this stupid “Google fu” thing, which keeps being repeated despite the fact that it’s awful in every way. The great thing about google (for a few years there, beginning twenty years ago) was that you didn’t need anything like that at all! Simply typing in what you were looking for was enough, and that was the reason why google was the best.

    As for today:
    I recently saw an article touting “The 39 google search tricks you need to know”. Seriously? Why would that be necessary, at all? That’s just so fucking stupid and completely backwards that it makes me want to puke. Everything on the internet now is some sort of misleading trick of some kind – and google is the worst offender. What a waste, those morons make me suck.

    But the truly frightening part is how many people still think google search not only returns useable results (which it certainly does not), but how many people still actually believe it’s a fantastic “search engine”, when it sure as hell ain’t anything even approaching one of those.

    Anyhow, the internet is long dead, and google killed it, deliberately, and is now just stomping on its bloated corpse because it’s just some sick fuck that get off on crap like that.

    Hey, google!

    Just… yuck – that’s what you are. Just go away. You ruined everything, you stupid jerk. It’s despicable what you’ve done to the entire world, and you need to disappear forever.

  39. I can answer your question easily. Google doesn’t care about being a search engine anymore . They were not happy being the absolute best search engine that was ever created. They have a google store , now and money has become the most important thing to them , being already one of the richest people in the world I guess was not good enough for them. They lost their souls when they gave up their entegrity , just to be a middle man for useless things t….a pusher of nic-nacs for profit became more important to google than being the smartest and best search engine in creation. I feel sorry for google. I feel sorry for us all left without the real original google. Nobody will ever convince me that selling nic-nacs at a profit is ever a good move for a search engine …and that all things change ..NO , they don’t change that much , but morals do.
    Haven’t you noticed if you ask a question , say , Who really did shoot liberty Valance , in the old google you would actually get an answer. now you get… info that you can buy that movie at guess where? yes google store , you can buy that book at google store , you can get the book about the movie or the author at google store . I AM sad ….we lost a wonderful search engine for another online worthless store.

  40. The only reason I switch to duckduckgo is because Google has started filtering out results it doesn’t like – google has a blacklist. Duckduckgo doesn’t.

    Also, google image search returns a bunch of crap results like pinterest which requires a login and a bunch of stock photo sites with watermarks.

  41. Google doesn’t want people to find the truth. That they are slaves to a certain “tribe” of bankers that took over their government, schools, and businesses and is about to force them all to take a deadly vaccine that contains a computer chip that will not only change their dna and cause cancer later on, but will enable, these psychopaths to read their minds and know everything they do 24/7. It will also enable them to eliminate these people if they step out of line. They won’t be able to buy, sell or work without this “vaccine” which is based on a completely fabricated Scamdemic.
    These beings poison our food, air, and water and now all of a sudden the masses beLIEve THEY are concerned for our health because of some “deadly virus” set loose ready to kill all of us and we all are all “asymptomatic.” Oh brother. Welcome to the ‘trix where everything is upside down and the beings on the screens are masquerading as “human.”Wearing a facemask to keep a virus out.Is like having a chainlink fence around your yard to keep MOSQUITOES out.It doesn’t work.Will fly right through it.👍😁 (IF it wasn’t a huge LIE to begin with!!!)
    Biggest scam ever and yet people walking around with diapers on their faces like zombies.
    “Once the herd accepts mandatory forcible vaccination, it’s game over! They will accept anything, such as forcible blood and organ donation……. for the “greater good.” We can genetically modify children and sterilize them. — for the “greater good.” Control sheep minds and you control the herd. Vaccine makers stand to make billions, and many of you in this room are investors. It’s a big win-win!! We thin out the herd and the herd pays us for providing extermination services. Now, what’s for lunch, huh?” ~Henry Kissinger in a speech to the World Health Council on Eugenics, Feb 25, 2009
    👍”Almost all oppression via propaganda is based upon scaring people and then presenting a false choice where the people can either to do what you want them to do, or face some unknown, often purely fictional horror. A successful modern tyrant never presents himself as the thing to be afraid of… Everything to be feared with which you terrorise your peasants must be presented as some outside evil which only you can save them from. One recalls, ‘The people never give up their liberties but under some delusion.’ – Edmund Burke, father of modern media.
    “So long as the people do not care to exercise their freedom, those who wish to tyrannize will do so”. Voltaire
    “If my sons did not want wars, there would be none.” Gutle Schnapner Rothschild
    “If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them will deprive the people of all property until their children wake up homeless on the continent their Fathers conquered.” Thomas Jefferson
    If the Covid fear wasn’t on the news everyday would we have even noticed? NO, It would have been just another flu season. Fear is the most powerful tool of the sociopaths at the top. The perfect tool and the rest is just a huge disinformation campaign to keep people as scared and paralyzed as possible. 1st the shutdown, then slap a muzzle on Americans…flash news, the government works for US…we DO NOT WORK FOR THEM!!! Those that believe or are “scared” are the ones who are causing this. If everyone just pulled off those useless masks and went about their lives what could the government do? Arrest everyone? We have the power to climb out of this tyranny, before it is too late.

  42. @Free Spirit:

    Hear, hear! Hear this free spirit, and listen to what they have to say, for they speakerth the truth!

    There is no “pandemic”, only talk of such.

    Influenza kills an average of 650,000 around the world every year, but you never hear anything mentioned about it, do you?

    Why, then, is 500,000 people dead (supposedly) from COVID-19 something to freak out about? Because that’s what the government wants us to believe, that’s why.

    I know someone who’s wife works in our small local hospital, and she said months ago that anyone who dies there showing any signs of COVID symptoms has that disease recorded as the cause of their death. Apparently no test is necessary to confirm this, which makes it obvious that the numbers are being artificially inflated. This is a standing, unofficial “policy” at the hospital, which is an obviously deplorable practice. I assume it’s being done in order to possibly gain more aid, or something, for the hospital in the future. Either that, or it’s just that people actually believe something that’s obviously not affecting millions of people around us (otherwise we might actually see them) is reason enough to ruin our economy and control our lives.

    This is madness! Do you know how I can tell it’s not real? Because so many people are buying into it completely, and without a shred of evidence other than the bogus numbers they see on the TV news. Those numbers aren’t even something to be worried about, because half a million people isn’t that many people at all – as evidenced by the same number being killed every year by the flu. Every single year.

    Of course, on top of all this ridiculous coronavirus malarkey, we aren’t even able to search the internet anymore. Thanks, google – you’ve ruined everything, and I wish you the worst demise possible, seriously. You deserve nothing less.

  43. I have been an avid Google user pretty much since day one. (Late 90’s?). And I adviced it to anyone who would listen. It was miles and miles ahead of the other search engines back then in finding what I wanted to find.

    But today I used the search string “why doesn’t google search for words I actually typed”. In Goolge. Because I cannot be alone in noticing just how useless it is becoming. And got this thread as the 7th hit (Yay, I am NOT alone…)

    I have noticed the decline of Google (the searchengine) for the last 5 years or so, but I would not be surprised if the demise started sooner.
    As a company I can still endorse a lot of what they do, but as a search engine, I cannot wait for a better alternative.

  44. Hey Google – we all know you love money. How about a win-win solution?? Why don’t you bring back the OLD Google search and call it “Google Scientific”. Make those people who want it pay a monthly charge like Microsoft Office or Adobe Acrobat – but give us a functioning search engine! I’d pay money to be able to find things again without having my keywords ignored or ‘interpreted’, or have 40% of my very limited search results be ads. Bet you’d rake in another $2B per qtr. Google’s ultimate dream seems to be to return a SIRI-like single answer to ANY search – to leave more room on my phone’s screen for ads. ..

  45. I actually almost always leave pissed off when i try searching google thier paid answers are all i get..im not a sheep google..youre ai may be the smartest but i dont think its firing on all cylinders..i hope its not the future. Facebook too has flipped its lid..if i post a covid update or an anti trump it warns me..then i cannot post again for about 12 hours…..i dont like it and its the biggest censorship i can think of…THEY dont want us to have individual thoughts people…we are being herded big time..big brother doent just watch us !! FTS

  46. Do you want to know how I came across this article? I was getting bored and idly typed ‘ “09” (and any subsequent words) was ignored because we limit queries to 32 words.’ And the seach results showed this. SERIOUSLY?

  47. So far, only https://www.dogpile.com/ is giving me truly relevant results for my search.

    The pool of results is smaller, but at least it doesn’t change the conversation while pretending to search what you are looking for.

  48. Great thread, got here by searching in quotes “google search has been ruined by blogs” on Google.

  49. I despise Google as a company, but it’s an objective fact, despite fanboi denials, that Google is a better search engine for just about everything than any competitor. This is a real shame. Competitors produce search engines with far shittier search results and far inferior functionality. Can’t even look at porn on Bing anymore; these search engines are going backwards. The ONLY time I find more accurate and pertinent search results than on Google, is when searching for leftwing news and opinion (leftwing, NOT liberal); for that I use Gibiru.

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