Fact Or Fiction: Nessie, Ghosts, And “Googlenopes”

    June 1, 2007

There was a very clear film of a very murky object that got released the other day; the object may or may not be the Loch Ness Monster.  As for ghosts (and many other strange entities), the debate also continues.  But “Googlenopes” – the term is new – do exist!

Hat tip to Marketing Pilgrim’s Andy Beal for happening upon this one; Gene Weingarten of the Washington Post compiled a list of so-called “Googlenopes.”  As it turns out, the terms and phrases Google doesn’t recognize are generally both funny and unrealistic, but at least satire can remain in human hands after robots take over the world.

Weingarten started off, logically enough, by explaining the beginning of his quest.  “It’s pretty hard to find a phrase or expression that is not out there somewhere on the Web,” he writes.  “I know.  I’ve tried.  No matter how unlikely it may seem that anyone has ever put certain words together, someone, somewhere, probably has.  When I Googled the exact phrase ‘Santa Claus nude,’ I got 278 hits.”

I’ll now give a few of the examples Weingarten found of true Googlenopes.  It’s almost sad that, by publishing his article, the Post writer ended their rare status, but there you have it.

“Sonnets by Elmer” was a decent one.  “Thor adjusted his mascara” also creates an interesting picture.  And we mustn’t forget, “Much to Paris Hilton’s embarrassment …”

There were also a couple of political Googlenopes.  To be fair, I’ll reprint one each, in terms of slighting representatives of the major parties; “The dainty Hillary Clinton” and “Richard Cheney in ‘08” were probably the top two.

Your humble author tried to contribute an original Googlenope to this article – I really did – but due to time constraints, I failed.  For the record, though, Google believes the existence of a “badass pocket protector” has only been hinted at once before.