Towards Understanding the Impact of Length in Web Search Result Summaries over a Speech-Only Communication Channel


Presenting search results over a speech-only communication channel involves a number of challenges for users due to cognitive limitations and the serial nature of speech. We investigated the impact of search result summary length in speech-based web search, and compared our results to a text baseline. Based on crowdsourced workers, we found that users preferred longer, more informative summaries for text presentation. For audio, user preferences depended on the style of query. For single-facet queries, shortened audio summaries were preferred, additionally users were found to judge relevance with a similar accuracy compared to text-based summaries. For multi-facet queries, user preferences were not as clear, suggesting that more sophisticated techniques are required to handle such queries.

Proceedings of the 38th International ACM SIGIR Conference on Research and Development in Information Retrieval