Is Google's Spell Checker Biased

Mar 8, 2007 - 7:36 am 4 by
Filed Under Misc Google

A WebmasterWorld thread asks if others agree that Google's spell checker is biased towards American English.

The example given is if you search on rumors at Google UK, you are not given a "did you mean? rumours." But when you go to and type in rumours, for him, Google will return a "did you mean? rumors" link.

The discussion in the forum thread is fun but also educational.

If you look at Google Help and scroll down to the spell checker area, you will see Google does bias the results based on most common usage.

Google's spell checking software automatically looks at your query and checks to see if you are using the most common version of a word's spelling. If it calculates that you're likely to generate more relevant search results with an alternative spelling, it will ask "Did you mean: (more common spelling)?". Clicking on the suggested spelling will launch a Google search for that term. Because Google's spell check is based on occurrences of all words on the Internet, it is able to suggest common spellings for proper nouns (names and places) that might not appear in a standard spell check program or dictionary.

As you can clearly see, Google's spell check feature is based on "occurrences of all words on the Internet," so if the Internet is biased towards American English, so will Google.

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.


Popular Categories

The Pulse of the search community


Search Video Recaps

Google Core Update Flux, AdSense Ad Intent, California Link Tax & More - YouTube
Video Details More Videos Subscribe to Videos

Most Recent Articles

Search Forum Recap

Daily Search Forum Recap: April 19, 2024

Apr 19, 2024 - 4:00 pm
Search Video Recaps

Search News Buzz Video Recap: Google Core Update Flux, AdSense Ad Intent, California Link Tax & More

Apr 19, 2024 - 8:01 am
Google Ads

Google Tests More Google Ad Card Formats

Apr 19, 2024 - 7:51 am
Google Search Engine Optimization

Google: It's Unlikely Your Rankings Dropped Because You Have Two Websites

Apr 19, 2024 - 7:41 am
Google Search Engine Optimization

Google: Indexing API May Work For Unsupported Content But...

Apr 19, 2024 - 7:31 am
Google Search Engine Optimization

Google: Are Hyphenated Domains Bad For Google Rankings?

Apr 19, 2024 - 7:21 am
Previous Story: How To Get A Job At Google?