Saturday, February 13, 2010

Keywords Are Not Context

I'm sure we all notice each time a totally inappropriate Google ad shows up. A few examples I've seen recently:

  • A page about King Crimson's song "The Court of the Crimson King" is accompanied by ads for getting a job as a court reporter and court-accepted anger-management classes.
  • When I created a recent post on the book Get Me Out (about the history of childbirth), Blogger thought I was having a C-section and might be interested getting "a Free C-Section Info Kit and Learn to Prevent Internal Scarring."
  • A story about that waste of paper called the Yellow Pages brings up ads for the Yellow Pages.
In responding to that Yellow Pages story on Ed Kohler's The Deets blog, commenter Paul Schatz explained the problem succinctly:

"Keywords are not context."

I'm going to print that on a T-shirt.

2 comments:

Ms Sparrow said...

I have been amused by some of these popup ads myself. I once posted a blog complaining about a product only to have an ad for that product popup.

Blythe said...

I should remember this point the next time someone asks me if computers can't just make the indexes for books these days.