Viewers Looking For Pineapple Express Are Also Seeing Leafly Scores When Googling
There are a handful of marijuana strains that share names with popular films. The films L.A. Confidential, The Fifth Element. Three Kings, The Killing Fields and Pineapple Express are also names of strains. But for some reason, when you pull Google reviews for Pineapple Express you’ll find something very interesting.
Leafly took to their blog on Thursday to report that some of their users have found the marijuana strain score from Leafly attached to the movie review of the same name.
The Seth Rogan and James Franco stoner comedy has scores from IMDB, Rotten Tomatoes and Leafly.
For long time users of Leafly they may remember when the company used 10 point scale for strain reviews. They’ve since cut back to a 5 star system. Google is pulling Pineapple Express strain reviews from the days of the 10 point system. According to Google, Pineapple Express has an 8/10 rating. The actual hybrid strain has a 4.4 average ranking based on nearly 1700 reviews.
Leafly tried the other four movie titles but none of them showed similar results. The problem seems to be specific to Pineapple Express.
Leafly’s Senior Content Strategist, David Karalis explained some of the background on Google’s knowledge graph, but still didn’t explain why the error.
Google launched the Knowledge Graph in 2012 to improve the relevancy of their search results by allowing them to recognize different people, places, and things, and how these entities relate to one another. The output is the panel in the search results you see in the screenshots above, which Google aims to include all of the details it deems necessary about your search in; for movies, this usually includes reviews, the director, the cast, and more. Google’s goal here is to move to a “semantic search” model, which seeks to better understand the intent and contextual meaning behind the overarching topic of someone’s search. The search giant process over 40,000 search queries per second, so they have a lot of data to draw from when tying together different topics and subtopics.
Rebecca Kelley, a senior editor at Leafly suggests it may just be an easter egg from a pot loving Google engineer.