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Friday, January 27, 2023

Examining Google's Near Monopoly Search

 Call for a reinvention of Web search.

Check out all the on-demand sessions from the Intelligent Security Summit here.    in Venturebeat

The internet turns 53 this year, and it has been profoundly shaped by Big Tech companies ... 

(parts of my look at the problem of web search driven by consumer data, the implications) 

As the internet advances into middle age, Google is currently in control of an incredible amount of the world’s access to information on the internet. Users across the globe appear to be constantly served “free content;” however, there’s a hidden fee for this content served up by a company that has more than 90% market share. 

Google’s success in search advertising, as well as its relentless focus on driving advertising on the web, has created a toxic web environment where everything we do is surveilled. What we do in a search and even beyond is packaged and used for advertising, and it is extremely difficult to tell the authentic and trustworthy from the attention-grabbing and deceptive.

But search doesn’t need to be this way. Consumers and enterprises alike can benefit from a bespoke web experience that serves up genuinely helpful answers to searches, not advertisers shilling the wares they want to unload today.

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Here’s how we go about reinventing web search?  ... 

Reduce ad noise by subscribing to an alternative search model ... 

Subscription services undoubtedly benefited from the pandemic. People signed up to Netflix, Disney+ and others in droves. Meanwhile, premium publishers shifted the majority of their content behind a paywall. People have grown accustomed to subscription services, as it doesn’t just extend to entertainment, but fitness classes, home cooking kits, software, skincare — the list goes on. The takeaway from subscription economy growth: People want products to deliver the best experience for them and not a persona that Google has created based on their buying preferences.

Web searches shouldn’t be any different. After all, it’s the way we access knowledge, and it informs our opinions. 

A search subscription model would make ads redundant. With no advertisers to please, the focus is put back on users, which means that companies can focus on making search experiences more accurate and intuitive. Users pay a small monthly fee in exchange for unbiased search results and a product where privacy becomes a de facto foundation; which is good news for everyone.

However, shifting to a subscription model at scale and eradicating ads in search is certainly not without its challenges. It’s why Google still has the monopoly on web search today. But it’s also not a dystopian future out of our reach.   ...  '

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