Google searches for the coronavirus are FOUR TIMES higher than for the Super Bowl as people are looking for advice and guidance during the pandemic
- Google CEO told investors searches relating to the coronavirus have increased
- People are searching this topic four times more than they did the Super Bowl
- The firm has worked to combat the spread of misinformation on the platform
- The move aims to provide users with authoritative information and advice
- Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19
Google searches about the coronavirus have seen a dramatic spike since the pandemic began, with its peak four times higher than interest in the Super Bowl.
The tech giant’s parent company, Alphabet, made the announcement during the firm’s first-quarter earnings call Tuesday.
Google CEO Sundar Pichai told investors that people are flocking to the service to find authoritative information and guidance about the outbreak.
The company has worked tirelessly to combat the spread of misinformation on the internet and help people stay connected while under lockdown.
In March, Google announced it was cracking down on the spread of coronavirus misinformation, as more people were using the technology to learn more about the pandemic.
It has also barred all searches of the virus on Google Play, added a website called ‘Coronavirus: Stay Informed’ and is presenting users with more information about the outbreak.
During Alphabet’s first-quarter earnings call Tuesday, Pichai said there is a higher interest in the coronavirus than there was in the peak of Super Bowl searches.
‘People are being more cautious and seeking authoritative advice and guidance to protect their family’s safety,’ Pichai told investors.
Google CEO Sundar Pichai (pictured) told investors that people are flocking to the service to find authoritative information and guidance about the outbreak. The company has worked tirelessly to combat the spread of misinformation on the internet
The firm has equated this rise to the company’s hard work over the past few months at making sure misinformation such as scams and conspiracy theories are block from its platform, as reported on by DigitalTrends.
Alphabet Chief Financial Officer Ruth Porat said: ‘We’re humbled that users continue to turn to us as much as they do in a time of global need and uncertainty.’
‘We take that responsibility very seriously.’
Google has also added fact-checking to YouTube this week in order to prevent misinformation about the coronavirus and other sensitive topics from spreading on the platform.
Sidebars or ‘panels’ will appear next to YouTube video searches on topics that have been vetted by fact-checkers and will show relevant articles on the topic searched by a user.
The information panels, as the company calls them, were launched in Brazil and India last year, and will apply to specific topics like searches that contain ‘covid and ibuprofen.’
Neal Mohan, YouTube’s chief product officer told The Verge: ‘When users are searching on YouTube around a specific claim, we want to give an opportunity for those fact checks to show up right then and there, when our users are looking for information — especially around fast-moving quickly changing topics like COVID-19.’
‘But of course fact checking will apply more broadly now that it’s launching here in the US.’
YouTube says that its network of fact-checkers include FactCheck.org, The Washington Post Fact Checkers, PolitiFact, and others more than a dozen others.
As reported by The Verge, YouTube’s panels will employ Google’s machine-learning algorithms to understand language entered into posts.