- Damian Lillard’s game-winning 3-pointer inspired a plethora of memes 9 Months Ago
- Gamers are blaming socialism for making the women in Mortal Kombat ‘ugly’ Today 11:36 AM
- Nickelodeon is selling SpongeBob toys based on popular memes Today 11:25 AM
- Alex Jones protests outside the White House by shouting the name of his website Today 11:13 AM
- ‘I Think You Should Leave with Tim Robinson’ has an absurd conclusion for every scenario Today 10:52 AM
- Twitch star TF Blade banned for racial slur—but he swears he didn’t say it Today 10:43 AM
- Steve King says backlash to white nationalism comment was like what Jesus went through Today 10:23 AM
- Netflix movies are still eligible for Oscars, Academy rules Today 10:21 AM
- Sheriff’s deputy makes homophobic comments on Facebook after gay teen’s suicide Today 10:02 AM
- The Marvel movies you actually need to see before ‘Avengers: Endgame’ Today 9:10 AM
- Twitter launches new tool to combat misinformation about voting Today 8:44 AM
- These Cards Will Get You Drunk is the game with one very obvious purpose Today 8:20 AM
- Conservative guy’s Elizabeth Warren op-ed inspires ‘slap in the face’ meme Today 7:37 AM
- ‘Ask Dr. Ruth’ takes a crowd-pleasing look at her life and groundbreaking career Today 7:30 AM
- Tom Holland and Daisy Ridley’s ‘Chaos Walking’ is so bad it’s ‘unreleasable’ Today 7:01 AM
Trump’s face is the now the first result when you Google ‘idiot’
Searches for ‘treason,’ ‘traitor’ and ‘collusion’ spiked on Monday too.
President Donald Trump might describe himself as a “very stable genius” and claim he has one of the highest IQs but, right now, he’s making the top five image search results for anyone that types the word “idiot” into Google.
The discovery was made after the president’s trip to the U.K., which sparked mass demonstrations and protest. As part of that protest, British activists even started a campaign to push Green Day’s 2004 hit song American Idiot up the charts to number one in time for Trump’s arrival. The effort failed, but activists can take solace that Google’s algorithm now links the word “idiot” with his picture.
To be fair, the search results also turn up a picture of German theoretical physicist Albert Einstein—who, most definitely, was not an idiot.
The algorithm shows no mercy, or bias for that matter, and, while it seems that the “idiot” search result manipulation was unintentional, Google’s search algorithm has been gamed in the past by online activists and trolls using websites like Reddit.
Ahead of the 2016 presidential election, for example, a Google image search for the word “rapist” showed several images of the husband to Trump’s Democratic electoral rival, Hillary Clinton, the former President Bill Clinton.
That thread was pushed by controversial pro-Trump community subreddit r/The_Donald, whose members pushed images of the former president using extreme keywords in their text headlines that would manipulate Google’s ranking methods.
Marketers have been exploiting Google’s constantly changing ranking algorithm for years to get their clients or products in front of consumers, but using search engine optimization techniques as a subversive form of protest is fairly new.
When it comes to Google, what is a more trustworthy gauge of public interest and opinion is looking at the website’s top searches. Unfortunately for Trump, this line of inquiry doesn’t flatter him either.
Following Trump’s press conference on Monday alongside Russian President Vladimir Putin, in which he infuriated the political left and right by refusing to accuse Putin of interfering in the presidential election, searches for the words “treason,” “traitor” and “collusion” all spiked.
David Gilmour is a reporter who specializes in national politics, internet culture, and technology. He previously covered civil liberties, crime, and politics for Vice.