Due to Trump’s latest actions and statements, people decided to troll him and propelled him in top image search results on Google for the word “idiot”
Donald Trump has topped the search results pages on Google since the beginning of his presidency. But now, things have gone even further, as he tops an image search page, not for his name, as you might have thought, but for a less pleasing word – “idiot”. Try it yourself.
This practice is best known as “Googlebombing” and it doesn’t require fine SEO techniques and knowledge in order to influence Google’s search ranking algorithm. According to a statement gave by Giovanni Paola, who is senior manager of SEO at Rogers, a large number of people are associating the word “idiot” with the US president’s name, “Trump”, which is how the Google’s algorithm gets to create these results.
“It’s not Google taking sides on the political spectrum. It’s actually the users themselves,” he explained. “To determine relevancy, Google relies heavily on relational data between words and images.”
He said that users are uploading pictures of Donald Trump on various sites and attach the word “idiot” to these pictures or somewhere on that page, such as the metadata of that particular image, which can be as simple as the file name of that picture.
“Over the course of time, when you have a group of people en masse doing this, it sends Google information to make the algorithm think that the words ‘idiot’ and Donald Trump are connected,” Paola explained. “So when people search for ‘idiot,’ Google thinks we have to show Trump.”
However, this “Googlebombing” practice has a long history and one of the most popular occurrences took place in December 2003, when pics of US then-president, George W. Bush, appeared whenever someone searched for “miserable failure” on Google.
On September 16th, 2005, Google released a public statement explaining how “Googlebombing” works and why it occurs.
“Google’s search results are generated by computer programs that rank web pages in large part by examining the number and relative popularity of the sites that link to them. By using a practice called googlebombing, however, determined pranksters can occasionally produce odd results. We don’t condone the practice of googlebombing, or any other action that seeks to affect the integrity of our search results, but we’re also reluctant to alter our results by hand in order to prevent such items from showing up. Pranks like this may be distracting to some, but they don’t affect the overall quality of our search service, whose objectivity, as always, remains the core of our mission,” was their explanation back then.
Interestingly, though, it appears that the search results on Bing – Google’s greatest competitor – were not influenced by the manipulation efforts that made the Trump-idiot association on Google’s image search results.
Up until now, neither Google nor the White House made any comments on this situation.