Quick Anatomy Of A Minor Google Bug

Small Google bug Ok, I know most of the people who read my blog won’t really care about this one, but since it’s much easier for me to explain it with screenshots, and just a tad too long for Twitter, I figured I would go ahead and just blog it.

John Mueller, this is in reference to the bug I had mentioned on Twitter yesterday. It has to do with quotes being added in to a link to a “more results” type search where they really shouldn’t be. To reproduce this, first, set your Preferences to show 100 results per page (this is just to nudge the “More results from…” link to appear). Then perform an exact quote search that has no results for the quoted version, but does for the unquoted version. I used [“Method for distinguishing a human user”]:

Quoted search with no results
(click to enlarge)

As you can see, Google (being the ever friendly search engine that it is) goes ahead and displays the results for the unquoted search for us. Yahoo, on the other hand, requires an extra click to see unquoted results when no results are returned for the exact match. Scroll through the results, looking for an indented listing that also offers the “More results from…” link (which shows the same search, but restricted to a given website). For this search, there should be one within the first couple of results:

More Results link on a quoted search with no results
(click to enlarge)

The problem is, when you click on that link, you get nadda:

Nothing shows for these results
(click to enlarge)

If you look at the message returned, you can see that the reason there are no results showing, even though there were at least 2 from that site in the serps displayed, is because Google retains the quotes from the original search, instead of performing the site: restricted search using the modified query where the results actually came from.

Hope that helps.

Oh, btw… unlike Matt, I do accept free stuff (ya know, in case you wanted to thank me for helping to debug Google). Links are always fine. 😀

UPDATE: I wasn’t thinking, and by using the search phrase that returned no results before in the actual blog post, of course it now shows this post and screws up the example. However, this search demonstrates the same thing (for now, anyways 😀 ).

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2 thoughts on “Quick Anatomy Of A Minor Google Bug

  1. Still not fixed, I can’t believe it!

    Btw, your search query doesn’t work anymore: this post has been indexed and there’s one result for “method for distinguishing a human user” now 🙂

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