Google Tackles COVID Vaccine Scares with 'Info Panel'

John Lister's picture

Google is adding specially crafted panels at the top of search results related to COVID vaccines. The panel will give information about specific vaccines available in the searcher's country along with details of rollout programs.

The aim is to use official and credible sources and counter less reliable information including misleading or unfounded claims about the vaccines. Using the panels could overcome the risk that pages with misleading information either game Google's system or "naturally" find their way to the top of the search results list for a particular user.

The first panels are already being used in the United Kingdom where approved vaccines were first delivered (other than clinical trials) this week.

Government Info Promoted

An example panel shown by Google begins with a list of the vaccines approved by regulators in the UK (a single one so far). It's followed by news stories from media sources generally considered reliable and then lists "Local and national resources" which include the relevant pages from the UK government and the country's National Health Service (NHS).

The move builds on an existing program in YouTube to show credible information as a text panel in search results for COVID-related terms. That's particularly important as it is much more difficult to automatically scan and assess the content of videos than it is with web page searches, where Google could downplay pages which contain claims known to be contentious or dangerous.

Dubious Videos Deleted

Google also says that it has removed more than 700,000 YouTube videos with misleading vaccine-related content since October. That's when it changed its policies and began deleting such clips rather than trying to moderate them or penalize them in search results. (Source:

As well as tackling misleading information, Google says it also wants to boost credible reporting. It's paying $1.5 million to help set up a "media hub" where journalists can access updates on vaccine research and contact expert scientists. Google is also funding university research projects which will survey the public to find out what formats and sources of information are most effective at countering bogus claims. (Source:

What's Your Opinion?

Is Google right to make these moves? Should it go further, for example by actively downgrading or even "delisting" search results that point to sites publishing misleading vaccine claims? Do you trust Google to do a good job of assessing which information is credible?

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Navy vet's picture

Google is not the arbiter of truth or accuracy. They are a media arm of the Left.

kitekrazy's picture

If they block it then it is most likely true.

bob_baer's picture

They've done an excellent job at filtering truth and just letting the leftist crap through.

So it continues.

I've been pleased to see tech stocks taking a dive though...

HallBryant's picture

Moving on from interfering with elections google is now interfering with your health.

DavidInMississippi's picture

Both the WHO and the CDC, less than 5 years ago, were very firm on their position that it takes at least FIVE YEARS to evaluate a new vaccine's effectiveness and safety. Witness the many illnesses and deaths caused by the flu vaccines rushed into production in 2009 and 2015.

Now, suddenly, they are both okay with having fast-tracked vaccines, with only a few months of development, approved for widespread distribution?

Do you think money might somehow be involved?

Add that to the fact that the U.S. CONGRESS has indemnified vaccine makers from being sued for any ill effects caused by those vaccines, and you've got a deadly threat out there poised to come down on everyone's heads.

anniew's picture

Oh yes, I'm sure I will trust Google for true info about my health! All these tech giants have shown how corrupt they are. It's great that people are migrating to Parler, Rumble, and the rest.

alan.cameron_4852's picture

From what I have seen so far all the above comments are Trumpisms.
The predictable outcome of a population that can't come to terms with losing.

Navy vet's picture

Hillary, is that you?