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Santorum’s “Google Problem” solved

For years, the first result in Google for “Santorum” was a prank site that reads, “The frothy mixture of lube and fecal matter that is sometimes the by-product of anal sex.” This week, Google finally deemed presidential candidate Rick Santorum more relevant than anal sex.

As Search Engine Land’s Danny Sullivan reports, when you search Google for “Santorum,” you no longer see a definition related to anal sex as your first search result. It now returns Rick Santorum’s Wikipedia page. The official line is that Google made some adjustments to its algorithm to penalize irrelevant adult content. Sullivan’s report is really comprehensive if you want to learn more.

This is the latest twist in the long-running campaign by columnist Dan Savage, begun in 2003, to smear Santorum’s name as a result of his fiercely anti-gay views. “Savage and his perverted sense of humor is the reason why my children cannot Google their father’s name,” Santorum himself wrote in a fund-raising letter last year.

You might think Rick Santorum is a toad unfit to hold office, but that doesn’t mean the guy doesn’t deserve a fair shake from Google.

Officially, Google says it doesn’t manipulate its search results for reasons such as this, but its engineers must have felt pressure to fix this bug.

— By Daryl Lang. Filed under Politics, Technology

One comment

  1. Jeff McKown says:

    Dan Savage can’t complain, really. His idea was brilliant and he had a good run.

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