Google Caught Telling Whoppers About Spanking Porn

I just caught Google lying about Spanking Blog. Specifically, in response to a search for a specific phrase from a randomly-selected Spanking Blog post, Google denied knowing about that post. But Google does know about that post. I can prove it with screen shots. Google is telling whoppers.

First, some history: Spanking Blog used to get a ton of search engine traffic. Type “spanking” into the search box and Spanking Blog was the first search result. But that was a dozen years ago. Recently? Not so much. Over time, Google started deprecating porn in its results, even for users who set their Google adult filter settings as permissibly as Google would allow. True spanking porn became increasingly sparse in the top ten pages of results, and porn-friendly spanking sites like this one kept sinking lower and lower. Today? Welcome to glorious page 23, baby:

spanking blog on page 23 of Google search results for spanking keyword

Back in 2012, when this process had been underway in the web search results for some years already, Google was challenged by the public and the computer press when it started applying the newer porn-hostile algorithm to its image search service. A spokesperson denied to C|Net that the changes would block any specific adult content, but admitted making it so that queries for porn needed to be more specific:

“We are not censoring any adult content, and want to show users exactly what they are looking for — but we aim not to show sexually-explicit results unless a user is specifically searching for them. We use algorithms to select the most relevant results for a given query. If you’re looking for adult content, you can find it without having to change the default setting — you just may need to be more explicit in your query if your search terms are potentially ambiguous. The image search settings now work the same way as in Web search.”

Or, as C|Net summarized:

In other words, if you have SafeSearch turned off, you can still probably find anything you’re looking for by appending the word “porn” to your search.

Spanking Blog’s search traffic has continued to decline. Catastrophically, one might say; Google search traffic today is just a third of what it was three years ago. I had become resigned to Google’s growing hostility to porn, and so I didn’t bother to monitor that traffic closely. Nonetheless I always believed that a sufficiently-specific query would find my stuff. Sure, if there were twenty pages of non-porn results that also matched my query, Google was gonna show those twenty pages first. But if you searched for my stuff in a manner so specific that Google couldn’t find anything else responsive to show first, I thought Google would show you my stuff. Reluctantly, dragging its heels, pouting and screaming — but they would show it to you.

Yeah, no. They will not. It turns out you actually have to beg.

This morning I decided to try an experiment. I would go back to my archives and take the post from the top of each annual archive and try searching for it, just to find out how difficult Google had made things. I started with this post, from December 31, 2003:

spice-thought-post

Talk about innocent! The word “spanking” doesn’t even appear, and the post text — although suggestive of innovations in figging — is no more salacious within itself than your average sushi recipe.

Let’s Google, shall we? Google, give me everything on the internet with the phrase “evil spice-related thought” in it, willya?

google-lies

And there’s the lie, folks! “No results found.”

But wait! Maybe I have so many posts in my database (more than 3,800) that Google is only keeping a representative sampling, and this one didn’t make the cut? Google used to do that sort of thing; its robots would get lost, or it would decide that saving 2,000 pages or so from a big site was sufficient. And if Google doesn’t have this post at all, then it’s not lying, it’s just mistaken.

Does Google have this post? It turns out they do:

google-spice

And thus, the lie is demonstrated. Google knows about the post, but if you search for it by means of a specific quote, Google lies and says it doesn’t know about the post. Only if you include a porn keyword in addition to the quote will Google unbend enough to admit that, oh yeah, we actually have heard that phrase before, we just didn’t figure you wanted to hear about it from a stinky porn site.

And it must be porn keyword. Try a mundane keyword, one without any porn connotations, even one that actually appears in the actual post, and Google will merrily continue to lie:

google-wasabi

If you ever used to look for interesting fetish porn by using long-tail searches, now you know why searching doesn’t turn up the obscure fetish websites any more. It’s not that the sites are gone — though they will be, soon enough, without anybody able to find them — so much as that Google doesn’t want to show them to you. And in the interest of not showing them to you, Google is more than willing to lie. “No results found.” Don’t you believe it!

See Also:

  1. kaya commented on March 17th, 2016:

    Liar, liar, pants on fire! Google needs a spanking.

  2. Mitch Philbin commented on March 17th, 2016:

    Like you, All Things Spanking has seen search engine traffic fall as our placement on Google, and other search engines, slides up and down…mostly down. Just now, we were on page 20 of Google, but have been much lower and higher. When we started in December, 2006, traffic grew quickly, and we shortly placed near Spanking Blog on the first page or two. At one point, we even placed number 1 on page 1. I have no doubt that the algorithms used to determine placement have changed over the years with anything even remotely porn related being penalized.

  3. Spanking and search | All Things Spanking commented on March 17th, 2016:

    […] Boss over at Spanking Blog published an interesting study he recently did related to placement of his site when the term “spanking” (or related […]

  4. TheBlackbeard commented on March 18th, 2016:

    I have not commented before, but offer this observation: I had noticed some time ago that if I searched for certain types of “comics” using google, nothing much showed up. I have used “Duck Duck Go” as a search engine since it was recommended to me and I would suggest that others use it! Searches for BDSM Comics or related will turn up lots of results….why use Google when they are “sanitizing” the results?

  5. Forgetit commented on March 18th, 2016:

    Having been exploring the web for a few decades, I’ve noticed an increasing aversion to reality-based discussions of spanking. Not only are more searches pushed toward commercial websites, even recurrent searches of the same wording of Google through Tor turns up different results within the same session!

    In addition to being money-driven, there seems to be a trend toward pacification of special interests by making things as unoffensive as possible. Nor is this necessarily unique to the internet or to spanking for that matter.

    Much the same thing happened to commercial radio broadcast playlists as large corporations bought up more and more local stations. Personality-driven shows with popular DJs were replaced by easy-listening music. More recently, this trend quite literally wiped out the former XM Channel 4 (big band and swing genre) after Sirius and XM merged. Long gone are the days when Channel 4 played Billie Holiday’s Strange Fruit Hanging or anything else likely to be even remotely offensive.

    Likewise, consolidation of local newspapers brought about a national focus on news gathering that all but destroyed newspapers. These days, it is doing much the same thing to television. These changes opened the door for relatively cheap subscription services such as Netflix.

    Years ago, I predicted much the same thing would happen to the internet once large corporations gained control. In particular spanking has become a target because of the push for sexual equality.

    Anyone familiar with domestic life before the Sexual Revolution knows perfectly well there were times when teenage daughters, and sometimes even mothers, got their bare bottoms spanked. Everybody knew it.

    Then, over the next several decades, spanking became divided into two broad categories. One was abuse. The other was pornographic. Today’s internet searches reveal much of that duality. To a large degree, there are either warnings about the supposed dangers of spanking or the results yield an abundance of purely pornographic commercial websites.

    In the end, political correctness and money may the the final arbiters in internet searches. This may have rather ominous overtones as computer algorithms become increasingly influenced by artificial intelligence.

    After all, as with anything else designed by humans, artificial intelligence-driven computer algorithms are unlikely to be neutral. They will, and most probably do, reflect someone’s ideas.

  6. Spankings of the Week - chross.blogt.ch commented on March 19th, 2016:

    […] Made me smile Another use Colorful Smacked Blushing Setting the tone No room for love Working out Now that´s interesting Two broke girls will add this to the Art and Spanking section The Hotel Room A clip that won´t […]

  7. bodack commented on March 20th, 2016:

    With Bing or DuckDuckGo the phrase still comes up at the top of the list.

  8. C commented on March 21st, 2016:

    I guess you can consider yourself lucky that Spanking Blog wasn’t entirely delisted from Google as it happened to my personal spanking related blog. At least in my home country, Google doesn’t even show up the blog if you search for verbatim quotes plus keywords like “spanking” etc. Of course, visitor numbers dropped hugely when Google completly removed my blog from its search results.

  9. web-ed commented on March 25th, 2016:

    Google has been bad for a long time. I personally use other search engines. Not only is Google politically correct, it’s also money-mad, and commercial sites that pay them to be listed are going to show up on search results long before non-commercial sites like ours.

  10. John Osborne commented on April 4th, 2016:

    I had noticed this bullshit too for a few years and had completely forgotten about how crappy they were.
    Fuck Google, seriously, fuck them with a big sharp stick – sideways. I am seriously wondering why I bother writing blog posts that are supposedly SEO compliant as it is all bullshit where Google has been concerned for several years.

    Most of the bigger spanking membership sites with the word “spanking” in their title or header page don’t start appearing on their search pages for that word until about page 20 – but there is a whole laod of anti spanking bullshit from mormons and concerned bible bashing fucktards before that.

    As I said, fuck Google.
    Yet they’ll allow piracy terms to be easily found in our niche, of course. Wankers.

  11. Jayda commented on September 7th, 2016:

    Have been using Startpage and Ixquick as my search engines for years. They are more private, but actually give you good results.

    Google is so privacy invasive that any computer security geek will tell you to ‘stay away’. It is a haven for identity thieves.

    And the absolute only reason to have gmail is for your damned ‘stupidphone’ apps.

  12. How To Find A Flying Fuck: Porn Provenance Research – ErosBlog: The Sex Blog commented on October 27th, 2016:

    […] search tool at the Russian search site Yandex. This tool works like Google used to work back before Google started to pretend it had never seen the vast majority of porn sites. Yandex is great, I love it for […]

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