Google will disable autocomplete for election-related search queries

Google's autocomplete feature that predicts search queries will be removed for information about political parties, candidates and voting as well.

| Updated on: Sep 11 2020, 09:27 IST
Google Search US elections.
Google Search US elections. (REUTERS)
Google Search US elections.
Google Search US elections. (REUTERS)

One of Google Search's key features is going through a change as part of the company's efforts for the US elections. Google's autocomplete feature in Search will be disabled for search queries related to the elections. Google will remove predictions that may influence users on a certain candidate or political party.

Google uses autocomplete to predict search queries based on what users have typed in the search box. It's quite helpful (sometimes) and makes it easier for users to jump to what they're looking for without having to type the whole thing out. Seeing how this may impact the US elections, Google is making a change.

“We expanded our Autocomplete policies related to elections, and we will remove predictions that could be interpreted as claims for or against any candidate or political party. We will also remove predictions that could be interpreted as a claim about participation in the election—like statements about voting methods, requirements, or the status of voting locations—or the integrity or legitimacy of electoral processes, such as the security of the election,” Google said in a blog pos

Google cited some examples of search predictions like “you can vote by phone” and “donate to” will not appear in autocomplete. But despite Google Search not autocompleting these queries, users will still be able to search for them. This applies only to the elections and autocomplete will work the same way as it does for other search queries.

Google has also highlighted various other approaches it has taken to improve Search for users. Google said it has conducted over 1 million search quality tests so far, and an average of over 1,000 tests are conducted daily. It also has an Intelligence Desk that “actively monitors and identifies potential information threats.” Google also highlighted how its breaking news detection has improved from up to 40 minutes to just a few minutes now.

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First Published Date: 11 Sep, 09:27 IST