Humiliation nation

More on the “Google invisible”

More suggestions arriving in response to my question: “What do you call people who don’t show up on a Google search?”

Tony Blow from Pointsize suggests taking inspiration from sci-fi/drug-fantasy author Jeff Noon: “Call them Dodos. It’s the name he gives people who cannot dream.”

Over at the Shifted Librarian, Jenny votes for “the ungoogleables”.

And dig this: Bob Morris wrote me to point out a whole other issue. He calls himself “antiUngoogleable”:

Ah, but this conversation misses a huge category of the unGoogleables. People like like me with common names, Google “Bob Morris” as you get many differing Bob Morris’es, and in fact, I am not listed in the top pages (sob). So, there’s no way to accurately Google me, as there are too many of me.

Does that make me antiUnGoogleable, and thus, UnGoogleable?

Another gorgeous onion-layer surrounding this weird issue! He’s right, of course; this happens all the time when I’m reporting. I’ll try to find info on someone named, say, Sam Johnson — only to be swamped with 20,000 hits that are dominated by the U.S. Representative with that name, as well as a Sam Johnson who is a professional “rolfer”. No, I didn’t know what rolfing was either.

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I'm Clive Thompson, the author of Smarter Than You Think: How Technology is Changing Our Minds for the Better (Penguin Press). You can order the book now at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Powells, Indiebound, or through your local bookstore! I'm also a contributing writer for the New York Times Magazine and a columnist for Wired magazine. Email is here or ping me via the antiquated form of AOL IM (pomeranian99).

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