Bing engineer accuses Google of profiting from search spam

Earlier today a clash of the titans, or clash of the search engine giants, sparked an Internet out burst of Google accusing Bing of stealing their search results. From the looks of it, Microsoft was caught red handed in stealing both titles and descriptions of various search results.

Microsoft was defensive about the whole case, claiming that the Bing toolbar tracks users click data, providing the information back to Bing, providing the identical search results. Angered by the claims against Bing, Microsoft formally responded to Google by saying they "do not copy Google's results."

After the fact, Harry Shum, VP of search development for Bing, came out and basically accused Google of profiting from search spam results, according to businessinsider.com. The pretty bold claim accuses Google of playing both sides of the spam game; by allowing spam sites to make their money by running Google Ads, in which Google does take a share of the profits.

Shum claims that 70% of spam sites use Google Ads to help fund themselves:

I'd say you are really sidestepping the big problems, the origin of the spam, why they appeared in the first place. There must be an economic incentive to create his kind of content. Why? 70% of those pages show Google Ads....You can't just say because you don't report to VP of ad sales you have no problem.

Google then replied saying it does scan websites, regardless if they use Google Ads or not, periodically, removing any websites that contain spam from their search results and advertising program.

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38 Comments

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What I'd like to see banned are the likes of 'Brothersoft' and other scum sucking roaches who clog up the search results with automatic page generations claiming they have 'content' when in reality it s a generated page search result for their website.

What about the ad that was advertusing IE 9 Beta, when you actually clicked on it, it directed you to Google Chrome?

sexypeperodri said,
Since when is Bing a search titan? I must be missing something.

Isn't Yahoo search now run by Microsoft? If so then Yahoo = Bing in drag.

Sounds just like the Sandy Bridge issue, too many people over-hyped over it and making it sound like the world is going to end. LOL

I'm sorry, I know people think Neowin is all Microsoft lovers, but you gotta admit, Google looks bad here. Their first accusation is quite stupid.

All this back talk never ends...

Why can't they focus on improving their own products instead of spending time kicking the competitor's products?

Tpiom said,
All this back talk never ends...

Why can't they focus on improving their own products instead of spending time kicking the competitor's products?

Or better yet, do both?

Tpiom said,
All this back talk never ends...

Why can't they focus on improving their own products instead of spending time kicking the competitor's products?

You talk as though one person taking a few minutes to make some comments in some way detracts from the entire departments efforts in search! really?

Uh, so why are they working against it then?

This article says it well, and explains the incentives Google have to keep their results spam-free:
http://www.blogohblog.com/dont-let-google-adsense-ban-you/

"Google, being the indisputable leader in search engines from then until now, is placing a high importance on the quality and relevancy of its search engines. Most especially now that the company is public property. In order to keep the shareholders and users of its engines happy, the quality of the returned results are given extreme importance. For this same reason, doing the wrong things in the Adsense and other forms of advertisements, whether intentionally or unintentionally, will result in a severe penalty, may get you banned and even have your account terminated."

And these aren't biased words from Google, but words from someone who had trouble with Google.

Northgrove said,
Uh, so why are they working against it then?

Dude... spam in search results has been a problem on Google for YEARS. Wow, they sure have shown that they are serous about it, huh?

Northgrove said,
Uh, so why are they working against it then?

This article says it well, and explains the incentives Google have to keep their results spam-free:
http://www.blogohblog.com/dont-let-google-adsense-ban-you/

"Google, being the indisputable leader in search engines from then until now, is placing a high importance on the quality and relevancy of its search engines. Most especially now that the company is public property. In order to keep the shareholders and users of its engines happy, the quality of the returned results are given extreme importance. For this same reason, doing the wrong things in the Adsense and other forms of advertisements, whether intentionally or unintentionally, will result in a severe penalty, may get you banned and even have your account terminated."

And these aren't biased words from Google, but words from someone who had trouble with Google.

There are different kinds of spam...

Sites that are making money for Google or using Google Ads are not truly spam to Google. This is where the problem is and why basic definitions stray.

one reason why I hate google (and they aren't the only ones) at this point. Everything I search for has results are spam. It's annoying.

Considering Bing's worldwide market share is quite low (may be doing better in just the US) would it really be accurate to call it a giant in the search industry?

thealexweb said,
Considering Bing's worldwide market share is quite low (may be doing better in just the US) would it really be accurate to call it a giant in the search industry?

Depending on the search reporting site you choose, Bing/Microsoft is somewhere between 10-30% with Google somewhere between 80-60%.

More importantly, Bing is growing about 2% a month that is coming from Google's marketshare, except for the month Google's Instant Search came online and it grew 0.7%, which only lasted one month.

So if Bing is not a 'giant' in the industry, then by your basis entirely on marketshare, do you consider Apple to be irrelevant in the computer industry too?

I'm going to assume you are just being funny, but thought I would throw out the numbers incase someone thinks Bing is not a problem for Google and therefore at least a 'david to their goliath'.

I'm not so sure. Google are pretty good with banning spam accounts - those which send lots of targetted clicks. I had a "friend" who got my account banned because he kept spam clicking them.

MissingBonobo said,
*puts on his 3-D glasses* You guys should watch this in 3-D! Its like they are actually fighting!

hahaha
coming soon to a theater near you

Pam14160 said,
Oh!, boy a cat fight. Just love it when the biggies go after each other.

Edit:
Going to edit my post because I used the word fanboy and don't want to get warned!!

From the looks of it, Microsoft was caught red handed in stealing both titles and descriptions of various search results.

Huh? That's not at all what Google's complaint was about. Web pages set titles and description meta tags, of course the titles and descriptions are gonna be the same!

JonathanMarston said,

Huh? That's not at all what Google's complaint was about. Web pages set titles and description meta tags, of course the titles and descriptions are gonna be the same!

+1 That is exactly right.

*grabs popcorn*

But yeah, sometimes I wonder HOW THE F--- google lets certain ads (especially the ones with a big 'download' button on download pages, and the sorts) run on their platform.

Julius Caro said,
*grabs popcorn*

But yeah, sometimes I wonder HOW THE F--- google lets certain ads (especially the ones with a big 'download' button on download pages, and the sorts) run on their platform.

You know how many "sponsored links (ads)" i get that say start a home business! I just had to click on one today and it is a pyramid scheme basically.... pay us $250 we send you info on how to use ad's to make money (aka do the same thing again)

neufuse said,

You know how many "sponsored links (ads)" i get that say start a home business! I just had to click on one today and it is a pyramid scheme basically.... pay us $250 we send you info on how to use ad's to make money (aka do the same thing again)

On the other hand, doesn't microsoft also have an ads service that probably does exactly the same and probably does have just as much spam? The sponsored ads on bing are definitely just as spammish.

Julius Caro said,

On the other hand, doesn't microsoft also have an ads service that probably does exactly the same and probably does have just as much spam? The sponsored ads on bing are definitely just as spammish.

Not really...

I don't have time to list how they work and are very different. Lookup what they both offer, how they work, and how they both make money.

Just a hint, Microsofft discourages tracking and other tricks to gather information that is borderline invasive, Google touts their tricks, data mining, and tracking techniques to sell advertisers more relevant ads and even some information on the user that uses the ad.

Another hint, essentially Google's ENTIRE revenue model is based on advertising.

Microsoft's online advertising is tiny compared to Microsoft as a whole, and is more of a 'feature' that is used to bundle and sell other Microsoft online services, which is where Microsoft makes the majority of their online revenue.

Anyway, go look up how they both work, and what they both allow, and what they are making money from. Track the money, it is the best indication of who is doing what and why.