Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Google Trends Falls Victim to Disturbing 'Stunt'

Miguel Helft writes on the New York Times "Bits" Blog:

Google Trends, a service shows the relative popularity of search terms, fell victim to what appeared to be an ugly stunt on Tuesday: a sketch of an airplane flying into two towers appeared as its second most popular item under Hot Trends, its list of the fastest rising searches at any given moment. TechCrunch and a swastika appeared on Hot Trends. A week later, the list was attacked again.

Search experts said the repeated incidents are something of embarrassment for the world’s No. 1 search engine. “It’s not a good thing for Google,” said Danny Sullivan, the editor of Search Engine Land. After last summer’s incidents, Google should have done more to detect this type of stunt, he said. “They should have been able to see that the query was not made up of words,” he added.

More here.


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