Cutts Says No Conspiracy Over Aboutrika Image

Pro-Palestinean message spurs debate

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Some site publishers in the Middle East believe Google struck a controversial picture of Egyptian striker Mohammed Aboutrika from its index, but Matt Cutts said that never happened.

Google may be a lot faster at indexing web content these days, so much faster that people have become spoiled and expect search engines to have items instantly in their databases. When Aboutrika displayed a "Sympathize with Gaza" message on a t-shirt under his jersey during the African Nations Cup, some searchers hit Google to find a photo of that.

Evidently their failure to find it immediately led to complaints of censorship and undue Israeli influence at Google. Cutts published a reply from Google’s images team to those critics along with a little history of search indexing at Google:


First of all let’s put the story straight: we definitely didn’t do this. In fact from the very beginning you could find the image quite easily on YouTube and also on Google News.

The reason for the delay in the image showing up on Google Images was that it can take a few days between when an image appears and when its crawled by the Googlebot, as explained here. It’s there now – you can find several copies of the image on a search for [Aboutrika] or [Aboutrika Gaza] quite easily.


"Please don’t assume that Google has negative intentions just because you don’t see a particular image," Cutts said. "When I joined Google in early 2000, we measured the time to update our index in months."

Cutts Says No Conspiracy Over Aboutrika Image
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  • http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/debunking-a-misconception-plus-a-reminder-of-how-search-engines-work/#postcomment Guest

    The photo only exists when u search in latin letters.. but when you serach in "arabic", it doesn’t exist anymore!!! GONE WITH THE WIND, although it was their few days ago , and you deny "negative intentions"?!!

    • Guest

      cutts is  a lier…………..you too…………………you took off  the image of ABOUTRIKA  the best humanbeen in all of the world,,because of   afraid…..of   your sick imagination  ,,,,,  sick  israili government, bloody  army  who  are  killing  peaceful  people in  GAZZA

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