Tuesday, January 25, 2005
Internet Users Are Naive, Says Report
The latest report from the Pew Internet & American Life Project shows that Internet search engine users are naive when it comes to the objectivity and use of search engines. According to the report, which was released Monday, internet users are generally unsophisticated and why and how they use search engines, and are unable to distinguish between a "sponsored" search result which is a result of paid placement and unpaid results. The study showed that only one in six users can tell the difference. However, despite the naivete, users overall were very happy with their search engine experience, with 87% saying they have had successful search experiences most of the time. The study is bound to raise issues with the conflict between paid search results and the perceived objectivity of search engine results, especially since 45% of search engine users said they would stop using search engines if they thought the engines weren't being clear about offering some results for pay.