Search engines have become an inevitable tool for using the internet. There is still an increasing influence of search engines on internet users' behaviour and surfing experience, which has not been adequately met by scientific research. The oligopoly of three US search-engine operators and the problems that derive from distinct differences in culture and legislation in the countries in which these search engines operate, are serious topics that need adequate scientific coverage. This contribution aims to elaborate the central dimensions of search-engine research, gather together existing insights and make suggestions for future research. It examines search-engine policy and regulation in different countries, the economic implications of the oligopoly, the inter-effects between search engines and journalists in classical media, technical developments, as well as users and users' behaviour.
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