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Google Rolls Out A Major Update Revamping its ‘Feed’ Feature

The updates would reach users over the next few weeks, Corby added

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Adding more context and control over “Search” results, Google is rolling out a set of major updates to “Google Feed” including a fresh look, improved features and a new name — “Discover” — both for desktop and mobile browsers.

Introduced last year, “Google Feed” surfaces relevant content to users, even when they are not searching for it.

“With this new name comes a fresh design that makes exploring your interests easier than ever,” Karen Corby, Group Product Manager, Search, Google wrote in a blog-post on Monday.

To customise what appears on “Discover” for users, the search engine giant would now provide more ideas, visual content and articles of their interests based on their search history.

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With this redesign, Google has also added multi-lingual support to “Discover” to make the feature easier to understand and use for people of different dialects.

“We’re starting with support for English and Spanish in the U.S. and will expand to more languages and countries soon,” said Corby.

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Google is bringing “Discover” to mobile browsers also “as your new mobile homepage where you can not only search, but also discover useful, relevant information and inspiration from across the web for the topics you care about most.”

The updates would reach users over the next few weeks, Corby added. (IANS)

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Australia Proposes To Strengthen Regulations of Facebook, Google

Facebook has 17 million monthly users in Australia -- 68 per cent of its population -- while Instagram, second most popular site in terms of users - which is owned by Facebook, has 11 million users

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Australia recommends strengthening regulation of Facebook, Google. Pixabay

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) on Monday proposed measures to counter the dominant market positions of Google and Facebook and strengthen monitoring on their access to information, advertising and consumers personal data.

The regulatory body, which recommended 11 preliminary measures in the report, was directed to conduct a public inquiry into the impact of digital search engines, social media platforms and other digital content in 2017 by then treasurer and current Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

“Acting as an intermediary between consumers and news outlets, platforms are inherently influential in shaping consumers’ choices of digital journalism,” said the report cited by Efe news.

This influential position and filtration of news items could place the consumer in a so-called filter bubble, increasing the risk of consumers being exposed to unreliable news, according to the report.

“The algorithms operated by each of Google and Facebook, as well as other policies, determine which content is surfaced and displayed to consumers in news feed and search results,” it said.

“The ACCC considers that the strong market position of digital platforms like Google and Facebook justifies a greater level of regulatory oversight,” Chair Rod Sims said.

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Facebook, social media. Pixabay

The commission called for the creation of a regulatory authority with powers to monitor these digital platforms and recommended establishing an automatic mechanism to take down content that violates copyright.

The ACCC said consumers should be informed about the manner in which these platforms collect and use their data to create personalized advertising.

This would include a reform of privacy laws to require the user’s express consent to data collection and “enable consumers to require erasure of their personal information where they have withdrawn their consent”.

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ACCC said that it found that “competition may have been distorted in multiple sectors where consumer data is used”.

Facebook has 17 million monthly users in Australia — 68 per cent of its population — while Instagram, second most popular site in terms of users – which is owned by Facebook, has 11 million users.

In 2017, Google registered 90 per cent of search traffic originating from Australian desktops and 98 per cent from mobile phones. (IANS)