ApparentlyÂ assimilatingÂ Yahoo! and embracing a more social search wasn’t enough for Bing! to compete against the search engine giant as Google has provided “evidence” that Bing! is copying their search results.
In order to verify their suspicions, Google created 100 synthetic queries (all containing made up gibberish) in order to prove whether or not Microsoft was indeed copying their search query.
We gave 20 of our engineers laptops with a fresh install of Microsoft Windows running Internet Explorer 8 with Bing Toolbar installed. As part of the install process, we opted in to the â€œSuggested Sitesâ€ feature of IE8, and we accepted the default options for the Bing Toolbar.
We asked these engineers to enter the synthetic queries into the search box on the Google home page, and click on the results, i.e., the results we inserted. We were surprised that within a couple weeks of starting this experiment, our inserted results started appearing in Bing. (Official Google Blog)
According to Search Engine Land, Bing! readily admitted that they were using data from the Bing! Toolbar although Microsoft did not seem to show any remorse for using the information as a way to improve their search engine (which probably means that this practice will continue).
While I personally could not verify whether Bing! was indeed copying their rival (in fact I ironically found Bing!’s search queries to be worse than Google’s), this new revelation doesn’t help improve Bing!’s image overall which may convince consumers to stick with Google out of sympathy.
Google has not indicated whether or not they will sue Microsoft regarding this issue, however if left unchallenged Bing! will be able to catch up to Google (quality wise) which could threaten search engine giant’s dominance (not to mention their future revenues as well).