CYBERSPACE—Efforts by some porn spammers to get their videos onto Google has taken a turn for the historically perverse after reports have surfaced that holocaust-related search terms are being employed to achieve desired results.
An eagle-eyed poster to Google’s web search forum noticed an offending video last week after entering the search term "Witnessing History—a Teen Second Life Exhibit," which is a film about the Holocaust.
“Three thumbnail images popped up as ‘hits,’ the third of which is a pornographic image of a man and woman having sex,” the poster wrote. “The passage next to the thumbnail reads ‘In the summer of 2007, teens from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington DC worked with Global Kids to create Witnessing History: The Night of Broken Glass’. . . but the web site linked to this description is: xxx3.sexxygirlz.net.”
Tuesday, a Google employee named Skylar responded to the complaint: “This porn video should not be masquerading as an educational video. I've passed your detailed feedback to the rest of the team so we can take the steps necessary to address this issue. For the future, if you can tell from the video thumbnail that the video is explicitly inappropriate and abuses content that is clearly meant to be educational or informative, please click on the ‘Report Problem’ link next to the video and mark the video with the category that closely matches the issue.”
Wednesday morning, the video was still there, as noted by Search Engine Roundtable, but by later in the day it was gone. Skylar posted there and also to the Google search forum that the video would no longer appear in their search results and thanked everyone for their help.
“We really appreciate the time you guys took to report this issue,” he said. “Please let us know if you run across something like this again in Google Video.”
One wonders, however, what sort of traffic the spammers were after using search terms such as "Witnessing History—a Teen Second Life Exhibit?”
Or maybe they’re just stupid and only noticed the terms “teen” and “second life.”