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Google Tweaks Algorithm for Freshness

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Bigger. Stronger. Faster. Fresher? Google's freshness factors into its algorithm even more with Caffeine web indexing system.

    There's no denying the web is a firehose of constant content, data, stories -- and sometimes it's even accurate. Google is "building upon the momentum from Caffeine" to return fresher results higher in user searches return, their blog says.

    This tweak impacts 35 percent of user searches -- no small chunk of change. Google writes that it is highlighting this new feature because sometimes users need older results, so they'll have to alter their expectations some.

    So are they putting additional juice on legitimate news-gathering organizations, too? If not, then bogus blogs or intentional misinformation might lead on search results, reducing Google's legitimacy among users.

    It's possible that the tweak will impact, even hurt, larger news-gathering organizations -- organizations that hold themselves to higher standards and policies. You know: journalsim.

    Not that a blog can't be legit, many certainly are. Those are transparent about how they report stories, sourcing and confirmations (again, journalism).

    So, in the race to be first, users should expect more published corrections, clarifications and editor's notes.

    News organizations should anticipate a possible loss in traffic, because they won't be ranking at the top.

    This will force content creators (newspapers, blogs, local television stations, etc.) to at least want to get their stories online first. Breaking news is one thing, when paired with real reporting