Having added a (much-publicized) privacy link to its homepage in early July, Google again demonstrates its stalwart commitment to transparency: the company has added a “More Details” link to its Web Search feature.
According to the Google Blog, “More Details” explains how a person’s data is used to improve search results.
For example, a person living in San Francisco can run a search for a national business. In the upper right-hand corner of his results, he may see, “Customized for San Francisco metro area, US. More details.” The latter is a hyperlink that, when visited, explains how the user’s data — including IP address, recent searches and web history — helps refine searches:
The company recently released Knol, a Wikipedia rival whose user-created “knowledge” pages already rank well in search results. Observers to this phenomenon wondered whether serving 70 percent of US searches, and hosting indexable content, was a conflict of interest.