Stop that, it’s silly: Google’s plagiarism claims rubbished

Posted on February 10, 2011


The Colonel - Graham ChapmanSearch engine optimisation analysts have dismissed Google’s claims that rival Bing has plagiarised its search results as “silly”.

According to MacWorld, it be nigh on impossible for anyone, even with the resources that Microsoft has, to determine the complex set of rules that make up Google’s search algorithms. Armies of search engine optimisation (SEO) experts spend their entire careers hoping to gain an insight into the company’s most closely guarded secrets.

Gord Hotchkiss, in the manner of The Colonel from Monty Python’s Flying Circus, came forward to pooh pooh the accusations, and declared:

“This whole thing is a little silly.”

After all, he added, Microsoft would probably not want to mimic Google in any way as it wants a search engine of its own, and it would be nigh on impossible to use any data stolen from Google in a way that would be meaningful.

Earlier in 2011, Google unveiled evidence that Bing had plagiarised its search results that had been gathered by way of a trap. The search engine giant manually added search results to words that it had made up. Shortly after, Bing’s search engine results pages began to closely match Google’s. In defence of accusations that it was cheating, Microsoft stated that it collected information from thousands of sources, and that its data was biased due to the artificial queries used by Google.

Some people feel that Google has been left in a bad light. Charlene Li, of research company Altimeter Group, said:

“Google isn’t used to having competition. You look at this incident and you wonder why they are doing this. It feels amateurish in a way, a kind of ‘they’re not playing fair’ attitude.”


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