Google product expert suggests alternate search engine

Google recently deployed its AI overviews feature, as announced during Google I/O. This feature, as helpful as it is for saving time while searching, poses a major threat to millions of websites across the internet. Currently, there’s no way to easily disable this feature. Well, when responding to a request to disable AI overviews, a Google product expert suggested using a different search engine.

What are AI Overviews?

In case you don’t know what AI Overviews are, you may be more familiar with them if you know about Google SGE (search generative experience). This is the name that the company tested this feature under. When you search for something on Google, you will typically get a succession of search results that are links to websites. Well, with AI Overviews, Google will just give you an AI-generated summary of the information you are requesting with most search queries.

If you search for how to be safe while mountain climbing, rather than seeing pages with useful information, Gemini will just generate a paragraph telling you how to be safe during mountain climbing. It saves the searcher time while researching, but the sites that rely on traffic will suffer greatly. Using AI Overviews means that people will forgo going to these websites, and this means that their ad revenue will go down. This is why many smaller publications fear this feature.

A Google product expert suggests using a different search engine to skip AI Overviews

SEO Lily Ray made a post on X showing a Google product expert’s response to the “many dozens of requests” to turn off AI Overviews. In the screenshot posted, we see a list of bullet points outlining key points in the response.

Near the bottom, one of the points says to consider using an alternate search engine. “If you find AI Overviews particularly intrusive, you can explore alternate search engines that might not prioritize AI-generated summaries as predominantly.”

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While the person who posted this is not technically a Google employee, it’s still a bit surprising to see any person closely associated with Google saying this. What’s unfortunate is that using an alternate search engine will not pose a threat to the largest search engine in the world. We will just have to hope that the pushback leads Google to make an easily accessible way of disabling AI Overviews.