Microsoft Bing with Enhanced SafeSearch and Large Sitemaps Support
Article by George Norman
On 15 Jun 2009
One of the interesting new features that the Microsoft developed decision engine Bing brings to the table is the fact that when you search for videos, you can hover your mouse over a result and the video will start to play( feature called Smart Motion Preview). When you want to filter videos according to length, screen size, resolution or source, the option to do so is readily available in the left-hand sidebar. But when it comes to filtering videos according to content (adult content that is), things are a bit tricky.

You might remember that we already covered this issue in our lengthy “Microsoft’s Decision Engine and Everything in-BINGtween” article earlier this month. We told you back then that this is a developing story and that Microsoft is working on some way to address the adult content playback issue in Bing. While back then the only answer Mike Nichols, Bing General Manager, could provide is that Bing does not return explicit adult content by default, he now comes with new details on how Bing is capable of providing a safe searching experience.

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“We made two changes that we think will help. First, potentially explicit images and video content will now be coming from a separate single domain, explicit.bing.net. This is invisible to the end customer, but allows for filtering of that content by domain which makes it much easier for customers at all levels to block this content regardless of what the SafeSearch settings might be. This makes it much easier for filtering software to block unwanted content if SafeSearch has been turned off. In addition, we will begin returning source url information in the query string for images and video content so that companies who already use this method of filtering will be able to catch explicit content on Bing along with everything else they are already blocking for their customers,” explained Mike Nichols.

Moving on, the Redmond-based company has also announced that webmasters can now add up to 50,000 references to child Sitemaps. Rick DeJarnette, Bing Webmaster Central, explains: “You can now include up to 50,000 references (either URLs or links to child Sitemaps) in your sitemap.xml index file. Until recently, Sitemap files only supported about 1,000 child references. This enhancement will be very useful to extremely large sites, as now a single, large Sitemap index file, referencing up to 50,000 child Sitemap files, each of which referencing up to 50,000 URLs, can reference up to a total of 2.5 billion URLs”

But the Sitemaps enhancements do not stop there. The Sitemaps XSD schemas have been slightly modified in order to help developers and applications validate Sitemaps content against defined types. What this means is that the attribute “lastmod” is now “xsd:date” instead of “xsd:string”.



Tags: Microsoft, Bing, Search engine, Decision engine, SafeSearch, Sitemap
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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