Google, Microsoft spar over search results quality

February 1, 2011 5:21:41 PM PST
Google is accusing Microsoft Corp. of cheating to make its Bing search engine better. Microsoft says the way it is improving results isn't copying.

Matt Cutts, head of Google's Web spam team, said Tuesday that Bing was returning search results that seem a little too close to Google's own. That was especially the case for obscure searches.

Google Inc. suspected Microsoft's Internet Explorer Web browser was feeding information back to Microsoft that helped Bing's results become more Google-like.

Cutts says Google laid a trap that proved its case. Microsoft's Harry Shum, a search executive, says he sees no problem in learning from what people do on Google and applying those lessons to Bing.

Cutts and Shum spoke at a Microsoft-sponsored search conference in San Francisco.