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Yale professor challenges Microsoft “Bing it On” claims

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Do you remember those “Bing it On” ads? Microsoft ran advertisements that claimed a pool of 1,000 users “preferred Bing 2 to 1,” and allowed users to try it themselves with Yale professor Ian Ayers decided to duplicate the study, with and Amazon’s Mechanical Turk. Detailing his study on the Freakonomics blog, Ayers said that Google’s results actually outranked Bing’s 53 percent to 41 percent, on average, but became more equal (48 percent preferring Google to 47 percent Bing) when Bing-suggested terms were involved.

4 Responses to “Yale professor challenges Microsoft “Bing it On” claims”

  1. Rann Xeroxx

    Ha, I suspect the people who suspect the Bing results. Its not that I find Bing more useful then Google, I simply believe that the average person is highly unaware of what “good” results are and if you give them flash-bang, they like it better. Bing gives you that flash-bang with beautiful images on the search page, rich media in the search, etc.

    Personally I believe the results but I suspect people are ignorant.

  2. evster88

    I’m very leery of Mechanical Turk. Part of user research is being able to directly see what they are doing to gauge interest and honesty in the study.

    If he repeated his own experiment with students at Yale, I suspect the outcome would be different.