Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Google Mistakes Michael Jackson’s Death for an “Automated Attack”

One last Michael Jackson Web traffic story: Google says it received so many search queries with the late singer’s name on Thursday that it thought it was being targeted by an “automated attack.” Which meant that some visitors looking for Jackson info on Google News got an error message for about 25 minutes yesterday.

Google also offers up this graph, below (click to enlarge), to give you a sense of the traffic spike it got from Jackson-searchers. It’s impressive, but without metrics it’s sort of hard to gauge what it really means–just like the chart that Google (GOOG) provided about query volume during Barack Obama’s inauguration.

michael-jackson-searches


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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald