The Google Bomb
There's a new kind of weapon of mass
deception (WMD) being used on the Internet - the Google Bomb. By exploiting known
features of the way in which Google categorizes and ranks websites, large groups
of coordinated users have been successful in causing targeted search keywords to
force certain websites to the top of a search result page. A large factor in a website's
Google ranking is determined by how many other websites link to it off common keywords.
The best explanation is probably an example. In one of the first known Google Bombs,
the phrase "more evil than satan" was placed on thousands of forums and blogsites
with a link to the Microsoft homepage. In a very short time, typing that phrase
into Google returned Microsoft at the top of the list; today, it's not even in the
top 20. More famously, "miserable failure" was Google Bombed to force George W.
Bush's biography page to the #1 slot (it's still at the top of the list). Pretty
clever, for sure. Hillary Clinton, Michael Moore and others rotate through the top
spot, too, depending on who is doing the most diligent work. "rf engineering" turns
up RF Cafe in the #3 ranking slot as of this Factoid writing, which sure beats the
#1 slot for "miserable failure."