In this essay, who can benefit from the influence of search engines, and who cannot will be mainly analyzed. First, there will be a brief explanation of the origins of search engines. Second, it will focus on critical analysis of social, economic and other aspects of who can benefit from the transformative impact of search engines and who cannot. In the last part, I will explain what impact the search engine has had on my life and study, and what problems it has brought to me. In the conclusion, will restate the view and make a brief summary of the parts mentioned in the essay.
The genesis of search engines
With the rapid popularization of the internet, there are more and more websites, and the number of new pages is increasing by an incalculable number every day. It can be difficult to find the content you need in the mass of online news. This is to meet people’s demand for news retrieval, search engines began to appear. Search engine refers to take the keyword that the user wants to search as the search condition, and find all the content that meets the condition through its own information database, is a large-scale information retrieval system (Seymour, Frantsvog, & Kumar, 2011).
Archie is the earliest Internet search tool in the development of search engines. Founded in 1990 by students at the McGill University in Montreal, Archie has already taken shape as a modern search engine (Seymour et al., 2011). In September 1993, the first original search engine W3 Catalog was born, and in June of the same year, Matthew Gray invented the first web bot for retrieving news (Seymour et al., 2011). In November 1993, a second search engine, Aliweb appeared (Seymour et al., 2011). From this beginning, more and more search engine began to appear, search engine began to popularize. Many companies have entered the market with stellar results and have made huge profits from public offerings (Seymour et al., 2011). Around 2000, Google’s search engine was popular with many people through an innovation called PageRank, with good results (Seymour et al., 2011). The PageRank algorithm is thought to correlate well with the concept of user importance (Seymour et al., 2011).
The video details the history of search engines by Brad Cowboy, Standard YouTube License
Who has benefited from the search engine transformative effect and who has not
The transformative impact of search has benefited advertisers and driven the growth of the web economy. Today’s search engines, such as Google, Baidu, and so on, are actually advertising companies. With the rapid growth of search engine users, the phenomenon of automatic bidding on search engine keywords began to appear (Zhang, 2010). Automatic keyword bidding is when a company pays a certain amount of money for a keyword to appear at the top of the search results page (Zhang, 2010). Research shows that most users only visit the first page of the search results page, and very few users visit the pages after the third page (Luh, Yang, & Huang, 2016). Therefore, it can be shown that achieving a higher ranking is crucial for page click rate and flow (Luh et al., 2016). Advertisers participate in automatic keyword bidding through search engines can increase the popularity of their own website, to attract more users to understand the website. Some shopping websites can take advantage of the fact that more users can see and click into the page by buying the advertising space on the search engine page. Some users will buy items they like when they see them. This way greatly promoted the development of the network economy. The search engine is currently the main form of online advertising, which is considered to be a low-cost, extensible marketing model, and one of the effective ways to attract users to visit websites (Yang, Lin, Carlson, & Ross, 2016). Although this kind of bidding method can benefit many enterprises and promote the development of the network economy. However, as the Internet and search engines are newly emerging, there is no systematic supervision system to restrain them, so the search results are not true and there is too much malicious information (Zhang, 2010). This phenomenon will make the user experience worse, the search engine appeared in the web pages less trust. This will not only deprive users of benefits but also harm the interests of enterprises. After users get a dissatisfied experience, they will be suspicious of advertisements on search engines. Thus, do not trust the search engines appear on the web page. This may lead to doubts about the honest business.
The affect and problems of search engine
Getting information from the Internet has become an important way for people’s daily life and work. The appearance of search engine enables people to get the information they need from a large amount of data effectively and quickly. Search engines have changed the traditional social structure, enabling each user to access other users through search engines (Kong, Fu, Yang, Xu, & Han, 2017). The search engine brings great convenience to daily study and life, and can reasonably integrate resources. For instance, when writing an essay, people can quickly find information that meets the requirements by typing keywords. And encounter the problem or phenomenon that oneself does not understand, carry on a search on search engine, can get the answer quickly. People can also get some news and so on. Current search engines, such as Google, can judge users’ preferences based on the keywords they search for or the websites they visit and can push more accurately. But the search engine also has a few problems. Search engines tend to make people dependent. A large amount of information may hinder people’s creativity. People may search for information on the Internet more. When they have no ideas, they can find inspiration by searching. This can hinder creativity and the ability to think. Secondly, search engines are easy to cause the spread of fake information. The network information comes from a wide range of sources, many of the information is authenticity is questioned. And the network information dissemination speed, the scope is wide, difficult to distinguish true and false, and false information may be widely spread. Many of today’s search engines are essentially advertisers, so rankings in search results are largely tied to advertising fee. So, a lot of times, it is not really useful information for users to see, and the content of the pages that rank high on the search page may not be satisfying to users. For the real needs of users, search engine programs sometimes cannot accurately judge. For instance, for the same keywords, different people may need to look for different contents. After entering the keyword, the number of pages appears too much, and users need to read a lot of pages to find the content they want.
In conclusion, this paper first describes the history of search engine from its appearance to its gradual development. Secondly, it analyzes the transformational influence of search engine that can benefit the development of advertiser and network economy. But if there is no strict industry constraints, users and advertisers will be harmed. Finally, the paper reveals the influence of search engine on learning and its shortcomings. Search engines help users find web pages that match their requirements. But search engines are dependent, and it is difficult for users to judge the authenticity of web content.
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Luh, C., Yang, S., & Huang, T. (2016). Estimating Google’s search engine ranking function from a search engine optimization perspective. Online Information Review, 40(2), 239–255. https://doi.org/10.1108/OIR-04-2015-0112
Seymour, T., Frantsvog, D., & Kumar, S. (2011). History Of Search Engines. International Journal of Management and Information Systems, 15(4), 47–58. https://doi.org/10.19030/ijmis.v15i4.5799
Yang, S., Lin, S., Carlson, J., & Ross, W. (2016). Brand engagement on social media: will firms’ social media efforts influence search engine advertising effectiveness? Journal of Marketing Management, 32(5-6), 526–557. https://doi.org/10.1080/0267257X.2016.1143863
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