The Power of (Google) Suggestion

The newly launched Google News suggest feature — it on-the-fly suggests queries as you’re typing them into Google News — is interesting. Consider this comparison, with the search suggestions for Microsoft on the left, and the suggestions for Google on the right:

Granted, Microsoft just had a nasty week, which explains most of the differences, but it is still intriguing to see other dfferences between the two companies’ suggestions. Why, for example, are there apparently so many people who want to see stories about Microsoft’s stock splitting? That stock hasn’t hardly moved, while Google’s has been moonrocketing along.

Anyway, the whole idea of search suggestions brought up some nefarious thinking. Imagine delicately inserting certain ideas into search suggestions — “microsoft misses quarter”, etc. — and then standing back and seeing what happens to the company’s stock. The power of suggestion indeed.


  1. might want to fix that link :)

  2. I don’t know how frequently Suggest data is updated, but one explanation for the stock split searching could be Friday’s confusing headline on
    Citigroup, Microsoft Split Stocks

  3. This suggestion list, is based more on the prevailing News at any point in time. Its a machine which does the picking and not a human in the Editor’s seat.