Don't miss the latest stories
Search ‘Idiot’ In Google Images & You Now Get Trump As Its Top Trending Results
By Yoon Sann Wong, 20 Jul 2018
Left image via rvlsoft / Shutterstock.com, right image via Helle / Shutterstock.com
Donald Trump is rising high in rankings… on Google Images’ search results that is.
A campaign that stemmed from the US President’s recent UK visit, where protesters used the song American Idiot by Green Day as its anthem, has extended into an exploitation on this association by manipulating Google’s algorithm.
The online demonstration entails searching “idiot” in Google Images and receiving top search results that are photographs of the President of the United States.
At time of writing, 14 of the first 18 images in the Google Images search results are of Trump, as shown below.
Image screenshot via Google Images
According to The Guardian, protesters have likely managed to yoke this word to Trump’s images mainly through netizens upvoting an image of Trump and the term “idiot” on Reddit, also known as “the front page of the internet.”
In spite of previous cases involving Google algorithm manipulations, such as in 2009 when searches for “Michelle Obama” churned out photos of the then First Lady’s face retouched with ape-like details, as well as Redditors’ battle against US telecommunication organization Comcast using the swastika, Google has thus far refused to tinker.
Instead, the company tries to raise awareness by explaining that any site’s ranking in Google’s search results depends largely on computer algorithms. These are based on myriad factors to determine a page’s applicability to a specified query. At times, nuances in language can result in abnormalities that cannot be foreseen.
The algorithm is continually enhanced to be more convenient, though not necessarily more culturally conscious. The Guardian further highlighted that the effects of such algorithm manipulations are transient and wane swiftly, so before long, Google Images’ search results might not serve up photos of Trump anymore when you search “idiot.”
While these two associations have become one on Google Images, the US President has melded with another that is Russian President Putin over on TIME magazine’s latest creepy optical illusion cover.
[via The Guardian, images via various sources]
More related news
Also check out these recent news