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Google Wants to Change Its Algorithm to Promote Investigative Journalism

Updated on September 16, 2019

Articles that present "original and thorough investigative work" would be given the highest possible score by a panel, he wrote Thursday.

Investigations and reports of quality, involving investigative work, will be highlighted in the search results of Google, announced the US giant of the internet, a change that will require changes to its algorithm.

Explaining the planned changes in a blog, Richard Gingras, Google's president and chief information officer, said the information will be put on the front pages of the production that has taken a lot of work, such as asking for experienced investigator skills.

Investigative work

Articles that present "original and thorough investigative work" would be given the highest possible score by a panel, he wrote Thursday.

Members of this panel - some 10,000 people whose opinions help Google set its algorithm - will establish a media reputation for creating original stories and content, for example, by promoting those who have received the prestigious Pulitzer Prize.

The media blame Google and its mysterious algorithm, which ranks content on the search engine, to highlight "clickbait", information that is catchy and not always reliable that capture the attention of Internet users, to the detriment of articles Serious, original and verified products, not the media.

Bitcoin: hint of course manipulation after an explosion of Google searches

Between August 29 and 31, interest in bitcoin increased 50-fold, according to Google Trends. In the first week of September, the number of searches was almost ten times higher than the previous record of December 2017, when bitcoin peaked at nearly $ 20,000.

In the financial world, some algorithms monitor Google trends to position themselves automatically, and hackers could therefore seek to increase the course usin

The number of searches made on Google with the abbreviation of bitcoin, BTC, has exploded since the end of August, suggesting an attempt to manipulate prices.

Between August 29 and 31, interest in bitcoin increased 50-fold, according to Google Trends. In the first week of September, the number of searches was almost ten times higher than the previous record of December 2017, when bitcoin peaked at almost $ 20,000.

An amazing figure

A very surprising figure insofar as the number of searches made on Google's search engine tends to follow the evolution of prices, rather stable for several weeks.

According to Bendik Norheim Schei, an analyst for Arcane Crypto and author of an article in the online journal Kryptografen, this flight is all about "manipulation".

Several factors reinforce this hypothesis, namely the fact that the increasing concerns only the term "BTC", an abbreviation of bitcoin, while the word "bitcoin", much more sought after in the usual period, has not experienced a revival of interest and is about 10 times less successful than in September 2017.

According to Bendik Norheim Schei, who relies on data from Google Trends, the peak of search can be observed in several countries and systematically takes place in the middle of the night, every day at the same time.

Hackers and algorithms

In the financial world, some algorithms monitor Google trends to position themselves automatically, and hackers could, therefore, seek to increase the course using research fake.

Around 13:45 GMT (15:45 in Paris), bitcoin was worth 10,359.44 dollars against 10,356,88 dollars on Friday at 21:00 GMT, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Bitcoin has seen very significant variations since the beginning of the year. While its price was $ 3746.71 on January 1, the electronic currency soared to $ 13

Central banks or other official authorities could issue digital currency tokens, either only for specialized players or for the entire population, said Thursday the president of the SNB Thomas Jordan. The latter, however, sees with a critical eye such a development in Switzerland.

"Access to these tokens could be granted to all households and businesses, or only to commercial banks and other players in the financial markets," said the head of the Swiss National Bank according to the text of his speech at the University of Basel.

But the president of the general direction of the issuing institution warned that to allow in Switzerland "all households and all businesses to access the central electronic money (...) would present a number of risks".

The SNB considers "critically the idea of ​​extending access to electronic central money to all households and businesses," said Jordan. On the other hand, the introduction of a digital token issued by an official authority solely for financial market participants "requires a thorough analysis".

Why not "stable coins"

In general, the Swiss central bank is rather reserved with regard to electronic currencies, mainly because of the strong fluctuations that they present. They can therefore only with difficulty exercise the function of means of payment, of instruments of the reserve of value and unit of account.

For example, the main crypto devices, bitcoin, has recorded very significant variations since the beginning of the year. While its price was $ 3746.71 on January 1, the electronic currency soared to $ 13,387.26 on June 26 before returning to $ 9518,23 August 30.

"Crypto-tokens do not have the properties attributed to a currency worthy of the name, which is the stability of value, wide acceptance and the ability to make payments efficiently." In this context, it currently seems improbable that crypto-tokens are widely used as currency in Switzerland ", insisted Thomas Jordan.

Other electronic currencies, "stable coins", may be better able to fulfill these functions. According to Mr. Jordan, "these digital tokens, also issued by the private sector, have the distinction of being designed so as to present variations of value as low as possible compared to official currencies or stable investments."

There are currently about twenty such cryptocurrencies deemed more stable, including Basis, Dai, Havven, Tether, and TrueUSD.

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