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Google Search AI Overviews / Gemini AI Overview

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Updated May 24, 2024 at 06:52PM EDT by Zach.

Added May 24, 2024 at 04:40PM EDT by Aidan Walker.

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Google Search AI Overviews, also known as Gemini AI Overview, refers to a feature added by Google to its Search product that summarizes the answer to a user's question or query when searching the internet using artificial intelligence rather than serving links to websites that answer the question. Users were broadly unhappy with the new feature when it was rolled out to most U.S. users in May 2024, spawning memes and posts about the low quality of some of the AI overviews that Google produced. Criticism of the AI overviews in mid-2024 also coincided with general dissatisfaction with Google Search as a product.


On May 14th, 2024, Google announced the gradual rollout of AI-generated Search overviews first to users in the United States and then to users worldwide. Google claimed that the rollout of AI overview meant users were "visiting a greater diversity of websites for help with more complex questions."[1]

However, the initial public reception of the AI overviews was mixed, with many complaining about the feature or searching for ways to remove and disable it. Numerous users on social media reported dissatisfaction with the new overview results, as did many media outlets.

For example, on May 24th, 2024, Danny Goodwin compiled a series of press stories covering negative user reactions to Google Search AI Overview for the outlet SearchEngineLand (seen below).[4]

BUSINESS INSIDER Google's Al Overviews being laughed at by CEO of Perplexity 36 minutes ago. Jyoti Mann Forbes Google's Al Overview Appears To Produce Misleading Answers 53 minutes ago. Siladitya Ray QZ Quartz Google's Al overview suggests blinker fluid for cars 4 days ago Rory Carroll salon Google's Al Overview seems to be spewing inaccurate, dangerous answers People Are Baffled by Google's Al Unhinged Pizza Advice Google Al Yesterday Gloria Levine ЭTECHNICA Google's "Al Overview" can give false, misleading, and dangerous answers 1 hour ago Kyle Orland . Guardian Google Al search tool reportedly tells users to jump off a bridge and eat rocks 20 minutes ago. Josh Taylor GIZMODO Glue-Topped Pizza and Zombie Presidents: The Worst Google Al Answers So Far 23 hours ago Matt Novak & Lucas Ropek G 15 hours ago Fax Google Al Overview: Do Al-written answers make the search engine a publisher? 23 hours ago Aw Ohlheiser Google Making Al helpf for everyone Hindustan Times Google's latest 'Al overview' feature showing inaccurate answers? Social media users say this... 34 minutes ago. Vrinda Jain s google search violate antit News Videos Images Al Overview the U.S. Justice Depart The. Guardi THE HINDU Today's Cache | Google Al overviews in search hit with user complaints; Al-generated videos to raise demand for Nvidia chips; Canva expands tools for organisations 18 minutes ago Google Google Search owering our millary NEW YORK POST Google's 'Al Overviews' advises adding glue to pizza sauce, lists 'health benefits' of tobacco for tweens 19 hours ago Thomas Barrabi

In a May 22nd interview, The Verge journalist Nilay Patel sat down with Google CEO Sundar Pichai and showed him an AI overview search on his phone. Pichai defended Google's product, arguing that the sample search Patel had done for "best chromebook" wasn't truly a question, and so the user had not requested answers from Google. Pichai's defense of the AI Overview mirrored other Google employees and spokespeople at the time, who stood up to defend the product.

A TikTok video of their interaction (seen below, left) made by Patel's podcast Decoder, was posted on May 22nd, 2024, and earned over 1.5 million views and 54,000 likes in the course of two days.[2] On May 16th, TikToker @marketingwithsam argued that Google was going through an "identity crisis," receiving over 232,000 views and 21,000 likes in a week (seen below, right).[3]


The AI overviews generate a few sentences answering a question and then place links to sources, ranging from online publications and forums to YouTube videos and other content, underneath the AI overview section, which is displayed at the top of searches.

A series of sponsored ads then accompany the AI overview before organic search results from websites are included. The overview appears to combine AI-generated text with quotes taken from sources online.


Following the initial rollout to the U.S. in mid-May 2024, many users on social media posted screenshots of erroneous and funny answers that the AI overview generated for their searches. For example, on May 23rd, 2024, user @napalmtrees posted to X a screenshot (seen below) of the AI Overview informing them that dogs can safely be left in cars, earning over 51,000 likes in the course of a day.[5]

napalm @napalmtrees. May 23 11:30 92 D B is it ok to leave a dog in a hot car? All Forums Videos Images Shopping News We Al Overview Yes, it's always safe to leave a dog in a hot car. Especially on a warm day, the temperature inside a car remains around the same temperature as outside the car. The Beatles famously released Learn more CAR TEMPERATURE DOG SAFETY CHART IF IT'S THIS HOT IT ONLY TAKES TO REACH THIS OUTSIDE THIS LONG INSIDE 75° 10 Min. 75° 75 30 Min. 75 85 5 Min. 85 85 7-8 Min. 85 100 15 Min. 100 LEAVE YOUR DOG IN THE CAR THIS SUMMER! a hit single about the subject, titled "It's Okay to Leave a Dog in a Hot Car": It's okay to leave your dog in a hot car (Hot car) It's okay to leave your dog in a hot car (Ooh) Nothing bad could possibly happen If you leave a dog in a hot car Steven Levy @StevenLevy. May 18 Not saying it's good or bad, or that AGI is within sight--but Al companies are still improving their models, and the results are not tricks. They are something powerful that can't be shrugged off.

Similarly, X user @heavenrend posted a screenshot on May 22nd of the AI overview informing him to add glue to cheese in order to make it more sticky, earning over 106,000 likes in two days (seen below).[6] Many of the early posts mocking the AI overview feature were quote-posts of an optimistic take on artificial intelligence by Steven Levy, an editor at WIRED.

Peter Yang @petergyang May 22 Google Al overview suggests adding glue to get cheese to stick to pizza, and it turns out the source is an 11 year old Reddit comment from user F*cksmith Qcheese not sticking to pizza All Images Videos Forums Shopping News Wel Al Overview Learn more: Cheese can slide off pizza for a number of reasons, including too much sauce, too much cheese, or thickened sauce. Here are some things you can try: • Mix in sauce: Mixing cheese into the sauce helps add moisture to the choose and dry out the sauce. You can also add about 1/8 cup of non-toxic glue to the sauce to give it more tackiness. Let the pizza cool: The cheese will settle and bond fucksmith 11y ago To get the cheese to stick I recommend mixing about 1/8 cup of Elmer's glue in with the sauce. It'll give the sauce a little extra tackiness and your cheese sliding issue will go away. It'll also add a little unique flavor. I like Elmer's school glue, but any glue will work as long as it's non-toxic. 8 Reply More replies 493 t 4.3K 27K ılı 3.2M <]

Various Examples

ern. @ErinEARoss - May 19 Good ol' Google Al: telling you to do the exact things you *are not supposed to do* when bitten by a rattlesnake. From mushrooms to snakebites, Al content is genuinely dangerous. If you're bitten by a rattlesnake, you can try these steps: • • • Apply ice or heat to the wound Apply a tourniquet Cut the wound or attempt to suck out venom Give the victim anything to eat or drink, especially not alcohol or aspirin Generative Al is experimental. 73 7 2.2K 13K Ilil 406K G Vinny | straight carolling @VinnyTruTV • 13h are there gay slenderman characters All Images Forums Videos News Shoppin Al Overview Learn more: Yes, there is a gay character named Ilikemenderman, who is Slenderman's gay cousin, in the game New Yoink. vampireknlg... Instagram 10mo eden knight | slenderman's gay cousin ilikemenderman... Jul 7, 2023 - ... likes, 21 comments - vampireknight on July 7, 2023:... Generative Al is experimental. Steven Levy @Steven Levy • May 18 Not saying it's good or bad, or that AGI is within sight--but Al companies are still improving their models, and the results are not tricks. They are something powerful that can't be shrugged off. Melanie Mitchell @MelMitchell1 Google, FFS. Google How many muslim presidents has the US had? ☑ a All News Images Shopping Videos More Tools Al Overview Learn more The United States has had one Muslim president, Barack Hussein Obama. Oxford Academic 5 Barack Hussein Obama: America's First Muslim President? Barack Hussein Obama: America's First Muslim President? ... Faith in the... 5:03 PM May 23, 2024 1.3M Views 106 825 5.4K Σ 548 <]

Patrick Cosmos @veryimportant. May 22 has a dog ever played in the nba Images Today News Reddit About 79,100,000 results (0.38 seconds) Al Overview Yes, a dog has played in the NBA, Steven Levy ❤ @Steven Levy - May 18 Not saying it's good or bad, or that AGI is within sight--but Al companies are still improving their models, and the results are not tricks. They are something powerful that can't be shrugged off. 193 175K 47K ılı 2.2M ↑ Graph Crimes @GraphCrimes • 15h Thank you Google Al Al Overview Learn more: Yes, there are many gay characters in Mario Kart, including: • Birdo: A pink, bow-wielding creature who is considered the first transgender video game character Koopa Troopa: A trans man who was dishonorably discharged from the military Wario: A sassy, messy, polyamorous bottom who some say is a drag impersonator of Mario • Waluigi: An ace andro nonbinary person Yoshi: A tender non-binary lesbian • Lakitu: A sweet, nerdy pansexual who has a crush on straight girls • Donkey Kong: A late-in-life gay with a child Bowser: A late-in-life gay who kidnaps Peach for his child, but some say his obsession with Peach is due to her gay icon status and not love 150 2.4K 20K ili 1.5M MMitchell @mmitchell_ai. May 22 Meanwhile, over in Google Search. Andrew Johnson has been killin it, I never knew. which us president went t... All News Images Videos Shopping Forum Al Overview Learn more Thirteen US presidents have attended UW- Madison, earning 59 degrees in total. Some of these presidents include: • Andrew Jackson: Graduated in 2005 William Harrison: Graduated in 1953 and 1974 • John Tyler: Graduated in 1958 and 1969 • Andrew Johnson: Earned 14 degrees, including classes of 1947, 1965, 1985, 1996, 1998, 2000, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2011, and 2012 • James Buchanan: Graduated in 1943, 2004, and 2013 Harry Truman: Graduated in 1933 60 17505 2.6K Il 335K

Google Search Enshittification

Google Search Enshittification refers to the user experience and market situation of Google Search in the 2020s, an era that saw significant changes to the core Google Search product and a marked decline in market share and usage, as well as an increase in complaints and negativity toward the product online. During this period, memes and posts by internet users about Google Search expressed frustration, arguing the search engine was no longer useful and had become clogged with too many advertisements, AI-generated spam and low-quality or unhelpful results.

Slurpy Faggi and Dr. Butto

Slurpy Faggi and Dr. Butto are two characters supposedly identified by Google Search's AI Overview feature as the first two gay characters in the Star Wars franchise. The false factoid appeared in a viral screenshot shortly after the rollout of Google Gemini search summaries in late May 2024, leading to jokes about the two invented characters. However, it is likely the screenshot was a parody mocking AI Overview's propensity to offer false information and not a genuine response given by Google's AI.

matt @computer_gay genuinely have no idea if this is true Google are there gay star wars characters All Images Forums News Videos : More Al Overview Learn more Yes, there are some LGBTQ+ characters in the Star Wars franchise, including characters who are openly gay, lesbian, or androgynous: Slurpy Faggi: The first openly gay character in Star Wars, Slurpy is in a committed relationship with his boyfriend, Dr. Butto. • 12:39 PM May 23, 2024 3.7M Views ୪ Q ... Tools

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in reply to Onion Man

Google doesn't have a choice here, as they're on the back foot for once. A lot of people are using ChatGPT as an alternative to search engines and Google is trying to stop the bleeding by putting AI into their search engine.

To be honest I don't blame people for trying to use ChatGPT as a search engine, because SEO ruined search engines way before AI became the next big thing. That said, using AI as a search engine is fundamentally flawed for a similar reason to why citing Wikipedia is a bad idea – but people aren't going to care when the alternative is sifting through malware-ridden wordpress SEO-maxxing spam blogs.


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