Time flies when you are having fun…or simply trying to stay afloat when Google is up to its usual tricks. Hard to believe, but it has been over a year since the official Google Search Quality Raters Guidelines were updated.
It was on October 14 last year that Google made alterations to its published guidelines, confirming seven significant changes to its 175-page encyclopedia. This year’s update which took place on October 19 saw the mammoth document scaled down to a paltry 172 pages.
Just five major points of importance were highlighted by Google in this instance, as follows:
- Expanded the definition of the YMYL subcategory ‘Groups of people’
- Refreshed guidance on how to research reputation information for websites and content creators
- Restructured and updated ‘Lowest Page Quality’ section; reorganised and refreshed examples to reflect new structure
- Simplified the definition of ‘Upsetting-Offensive’ to remove redundancy with Lowest Page Quality section
- Minor changes throughout (updated screenshots and URLs, wording, and examples for consistency; removed outdated examples; fixed typos; etc.)
The expansion to the definition of the YMYL subcategory ‘Groups of people’ was particularly significant; now extending to discrimination on the basis of age, caste, disability, ethnicity, gender identity and expression, immigration status, nationality, race, religion, sex/gender, sexual orientation, veteran status, victims of a major violent event and their kin, or any other characteristic.
The image below provides a basic overview of the Google Search Quality Raters Guidelines updates for the past three years, as an interesting point of reference: