The team behind Google search is tweaking its featured snippets — the text boxes that sometimes spread false information while trying to offer help . The company announced an update that's supposed to make answers more accurate and avoid the problem of false premises, or questions where no definitive-sounding answer would make sense. It's paired with an expansion in Google's "about this result" option and warnings for low-quality data voids as well as a new partnership on information literacy lesson plans for middle and high school students. Snippets appear under many searches, but because they appear to directly answer questions by quoting pages, they can backfire in ways that standard query responses don't. In a presentation to reporters, Google offered some examples of these problems and how it's trying to fix them. When you search for how long light takes to get from the Sun to Earth, for instance, Google at one point offered a snippet that highlighted the distance from Pluto instead. The solution, according to search VP Pandu Nayak, lies in finding consensus: facts that match across multiple top search results. In a call with reporters, Nayak clarified that this consensus check is sourced from pages Google has… Read full this story
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