Friday, July 27, 2007

The JewWatch petition again

Some well-meaning people seem to be circulating a petition which last did the rounds a few years ago. It concerns an anti-semitic site known as, and the creator of the petition hoped to get Google to remove it from its position at the time as the first result for a search on the word "Jew".

Although the petition easily exceeded its stated goal of 50,000 signatories, Google did not of course censor the results, for reasons which are obvious to anyone who knows how Google's search algorithms work: they did produce an explanation for those who don't.

Of course, that algorithm cuts both ways, and a web campaign of links to the Wikipedia page on Jews or on Judaism, using the link text "Jew", means that a search for "Jew" now returns those pages as number 1 and number 2 results, and not So there is no need to continue to circulate the petition email. The problem has been solved, although if you want to include a few relevant links on your web pages, that could help to ensure it stays solved.


Blogger Emily said...

We just received another round of this old petition, so we have tried to spread the word about it. I have pasted your piece in my toolbar for easy access in case I receive the petition again. We need to be paranoid but not that paranoid. Emily

10:37 am  
Blogger Stephen said...

Thanks for this. I've moved my blog to Wordpress, so if you want the link on the new site, it's here:

I'm going to leave the old blog up as long as Blogger is still around, but it won't be updated anymore.

7:34 pm  

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