Arrested For Googlebombing (And Insulting The President Of Poland)

from the thin-skinned-politicians dept

The concept of Googlebombing has been around for quite some time. Basically, you get a bunch of folks to link to a certain site using a specific word or phrase and hope that Google picks it up and the site you link to reaches the top of the list. Wikipedia has a lot of good info on the history of Googlebombing. It's especially popular in the political arena, particularly in trying to insult a politician one side doesn't like by associating that person with a derogatory word or phrase. During the last Presidential election, both major candidates had this done to them. The real damage of a Googlebomb is quite miniscule. Often, the phrases being used are somewhat rare -- which is what allows the Googlebomb to work in the first place (otherwise, there's a lot more competition to get it up the list). Second, it's unlikely to impact anyone's political views to do a search on an insulting phrase and see a link to a political candidate. Realistically, all that happens with most Googlebombs is that the group that set it up sends it around to a bunch of supporters, who Google the phrase and laugh at a politician they never liked in the first place. At best, all it does is stir up the opposition to get angry at Google and then to do a Googlebomb of their own. All in all, it's basically a harmless waste of time (and more recently, Google has become much more effective in preventing Googlebombs from working).

However, as pointless and harmless as they are, apparently not everyone is comfortable with being on the receiving end of a Googlebomb. A programmer in Poland trying to practice his programming skills, created a simple piece of software that would apparently automate the process of creating a Googlebomb (it's not entirely clear how). He did so with a test using Poland's president and a derogatory search word. Apparently, his software worked... but Polish officials were not amused, arresting the guy for insulting the president. It wasn't hard to track the guy down, as he didn't make any real effort to hide himself. What's really bizarre, though, is that this guy is now facing three years in prison for a simple little hack that probably had no impact on what anyone thought of Poland's president. Of course, we probably should note that, in arresting this guy for such a silly online prank, Poland has called a lot more attention to this little stunt than if it had just ignored it and let it run its course.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Sudsy, Sep 12th, 2007 @ 3:36pm

    ...We set up the bomb....

     

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  2.  
    identicon
    Aquascum, Sep 12th, 2007 @ 3:40pm

    National Security

    I wonder if google"bombing" gets flagged by homeland security as a terrorist issue...

     

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  3.  
    identicon
    TheDock22, Sep 12th, 2007 @ 3:41pm

    Well...

    I kind of agree with this programmer. Poland's president is a d***. Come and get me Poland.

     

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  4.  
    identicon
    KOzOK, Sep 12th, 2007 @ 4:09pm

    Yeah that's Poland for ya.

    Being born in Poland (luckily don't live there anymore) I know a little bit about how things work there. It's not uncommon for someone to sue you, just because you decided to call them something on TV, or in the newspaper. Freedom of speech my ass, that country is f***ed in the head. Good thing he didn't insult a priest or the would go to jail for 10 yrs.

     

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  5.  
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    GoblinJuice, Sep 12th, 2007 @ 4:20pm

    - "Google bombing", while interesting, is sooo lame.

    - The President of Poland has better things to do than worry about netards. This may simply be a holding charge. (Not familiar with the political climate of Poland - sorry.)

    - The source for the... what would you call it? ..."bomb factory" must be posted. =)

     

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  6.  
    identicon
    The_Jokinski_Guy1609, Sep 12th, 2007 @ 5:10pm

    Jokinski!

    Isn't the President of Poland the same guy who invented screen doors for submarines?

     

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  7.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 12th, 2007 @ 7:26pm

    What the hell else would you expect from Poland?

     

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  8.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 12th, 2007 @ 8:03pm

    Re: Yeah that's Poland for ya.

    Hrm... sounds like another country I know.

     

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  9.  
    identicon
    Bah who needs one, Sep 12th, 2007 @ 8:11pm

    I'm surprised he could even *pronounce* the words comprising the insult and realize what it was! Insults written in a language whose three letters are c, w, and z simply can't be very effective anyway!

     

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  10.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 12th, 2007 @ 9:21pm

    "I'm surprised he could even *pronounce* the words comprising the insult and realize what it was! Insults written in a language whose three letters are c, w, and z simply can't be very effective anyway!"

    Don't be ridiculous, they have a 'K' as well!

     

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  11.  
    icon
    Aaron Martin-Colby (profile), Sep 12th, 2007 @ 9:50pm

    Yup

    Poland is quickly becoming my least favorite European country. Behind France. And Switzerland. Oh, and Canada.

     

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  12.  
    identicon
    BTR1701, Sep 13th, 2007 @ 6:09am

    Re: Yup

    > Poland is quickly becoming my least
    > favorite European country. Behind France.
    > And Switzerland. Oh, and Canada.

    Might want to pull out an atlas, chief.

     

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  13.  
    icon
    Aaron Martin-Colby (profile), Sep 13th, 2007 @ 7:58am

    Re: Re: Yup

    Thanks for the tip. I've been meaning to get one ever since I needed to prove to someone that Japan was just south of Mexico. That idiot.

     

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  14.  
    identicon
    Charles Griswold, Sep 13th, 2007 @ 8:50am

    Re: Jokinski!

    Isn't the President of Poland the same guy who invented screen doors for submarines?
    I've patented the innovation of putting the hinges on the outside of the screen door, so that the door opens outward and pressure of the water holds the door closed when the submarine is underwater. My patent-infringement lawsuits against the navy start tomorrow.

     

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  15.  
    identicon
    Nope, Sep 15th, 2007 @ 10:43pm

    So who did Poland higher to actually figure this one out?
    Certainly they didnt figure it out on there own. lol
    Ok crude humor, shoot me lol

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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