A Friend of Mine is Dead … Except That He Isn’t

I was originally planning on not posting today, but didn’t want to make it seem that Google was right in killing me off. One of my friends posted a long commentary on my death, so I figured why not share it here.

Thinking Out Loud

If you Google the name of a friend of mine, you’ll discover that he died. In 1984. Accept that he didn’t. Google has taken the information about a sports personality I hadn’t heard of, and conflated it with the picture image of my friend who, according to his own blog post this morning, is very much alive. (I hesitate to include his name here, along with phrases like “sports personality” because the Google bots will just have a further feeding frenzy on the conflation. But I’ll link to his blog at the end which is bad enough.)

There are two issues at play here.

First, Google, established a search engine — and let the reader understand what that phrase means — decided it wasn’t enough just to lead people to the information sought, but it wanted to provide the information with its page one search results.

So you get situations…

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