Crowd wisdom helps South Korean web searchers

July 5, 2007

Human powered search engines are all the rage with the launch of Mahalo one of the most talked about launches this year. However it turns out that the South Koreans have been doing this right for some time!

Naver a South Korean based search engine is storming along and has claimed to be handling 77% of all South Korean web searches. What really puts that figure into perspective is the fact that Google only handle 1.7%. Now of course the reason Google is so low is mainly to do with the lack of Korean language results, but there is another reason Naver does so well.

Relevancy and accuracy. Two things that Google desperately tries to do but can never guarantee as it’s machine led intelligence driving the thing.

Naver is human lead. It works in a similar way to Yahoo Answers where humans answer your search queries. This must bode well for Mahalo as their business model is very similar.

Great article in the New York Times on Naver today here.


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