Google’s ‘Project Owl’ — a three-pronged attack on fake news & problematic content
Google hopes to improve by better surfacing authoritative content and enlisting feedback about suggested searches and Featured Snippets answers.
Google knows it has a search quality problem. It’s been plagued since November with concerns about fake news, disturbing answers and offensive search suggestions appearing at the top of its results. “Project Owl” is an effort by the company to address these issues, with three specific actions being announced today.
In particular, Google is launching:
- a new feedback form for search suggestions, plus formal policies about why suggestions might be removed.
- a new feedback form for “Featured Snippets” answers.
- a new emphasis on authoritative content to improve search quality.
We’ll get into the particulars of each of those items below, as well as some background on the issue they aim to fix.