If you think that Google search is getting worse lately, you’re not wrong. This is evidenced, among other things, by new research by German scientists, writes Mashable.

Researchers from the University of Leipzig, Bauhaus University Weimar, and the Center for Scalable Data Analysis and Artificial Intelligence researched the results of 7,392 searches for product reviews on Google, Bing, and DuckDuckGo and concluded that search results are overwhelmed by “a flood of low-quality content, especially for product searches, that continues to hide any useful information.” A significant number of results received in response to such queries were “outright SEO spam with product reviews.”

The study showed that spammy websites are very common and they rank first in Google’s rankings. According to the researchers, “search engines seem to be losing a cat-and-mouse game to SEO spam.”

“SEO is an ongoing battle, and we see recurring patterns of spammy reviews appearing and disappearing in search results as search engines and SEO engineers take turns adjusting their parameters,” the report said. Although Google, Bing, and DuckDuckGo are removing spam, the researchers said it only has a “temporary positive effect.”

The report stated that Google’s results improved “to some extent” between the beginning and end of the experiment. However, the researchers found “a general downward trend in text quality across all three search engines.” The study warns that the situation will only get worse with the advent of AI-generated spam.

“We conclude that dynamic ad spam in the form of low-quality mass-produced commercial content deserves more attention,” the researchers note.

According to 404Media, other researchers have also noticed that Google is literally overwhelmed by spam. Search Engine Journal, for example, reported that in December 2023, Google was exhausted by a “massive spam attack” that lasted several days.