Search as news curator: The role of Google in shaping attention to news information

Daniel Trielli, Nicholas Diakopoulos

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

8 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper presents an algorithm audit of the Google Top Stories box, a prominent component of search engine results and powerful driver of traffic to news publishers. As such, it is important in shaping user attention towards news outlets and topics. By analyzing the number of appearances of news article links we contribute a series of novel analyses that provide an in-depth characterization of news source diversity and its implications for attention via Google search. We present results indicating a considerable degree of source concentration (with variation among search terms), a slight exaggeration in the ideological skew of news in comparison to a baseline, and a quantification of how the presentation of items translates into traffic and attention for publishers. We contribute insights that underscore the power that Google wields in exposing users to diverse news information, and raise important questions and opportunities for future work on algorithmic news curation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCHI 2019 - Proceedings of the 2019 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
ISBN (Electronic)9781450359702
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2 2019
Event2019 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI 2019 - Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: May 4 2019May 9 2019

Publication series

NameConference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Proceedings

Conference

Conference2019 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI 2019
CountryUnited Kingdom
CityGlasgow
Period5/4/195/9/19

Keywords

  • Algorithm audit
  • News curation
  • News diversity
  • Search engines

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design

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  • Cite this

    Trielli, D., & Diakopoulos, N. (2019). Search as news curator: The role of Google in shaping attention to news information. In CHI 2019 - Proceedings of the 2019 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Proceedings). Association for Computing Machinery. https://doi.org/10.1145/3290605.3300683