Yahoo Drops Search Spell Book

    October 17, 2006
    WebProNews Staff

For the most part, it seems to be an i-before-e problem, grey-hatters. I choose the grey-hatters because no self-respecting white-hat SEOer would target the poor spelling habits of the average searcher, right? Heh. Let’s leave self-respect out of it. The smart ones will.

Yahoo’s Erik Gunther posted the top-20 misspelled searches as a way to both promote Yahoo’s spelling suggestion feature and a proclamation of the importance of correct spelling for search engine use.

“We know some of our searchers aren’t dexterous when it matters most,” said Gunther. “Misspelling your query in the Search box used to lead to disastrous results. But thanks to our advanced computerized technology, we can catch most of your mistakes and provide you with the correct result.”

The Top 20:

1. Rachel Ray (Rachael Ray)
2. Tatoos (Tattoos)
3. Scarlett Johanson (Scarlett Johansson)
4. Wierd Al Yankovic (Weird Al Yankovic)
5. Evanesence (Evanescence)
6. Soduku (Sudoku)
7. Barbara Streisand (Barbra Streisand)
8. Louis Vitton (Louis Vuitton)
9. Jamie Presley (Jaime Pressly)
10. Jimmy Buffet (Jimmy Buffett)
11. Brittany Spears (Britney Spears)
12. Brittney Spears (ibid)
13. Anna Nichole Smith (Anna Nicole Smith)
14. Eva Mendez (Eva Mendes)
15. Jessica Beil (Jessica Biel)
16. The Biggest Looser (The Biggest Loser)
17. Jennifer Anniston (Jennifer Aniston)
18. Marie Antionette (Marie Antoinette)
19. Mercedez Benz (Mercedes Benz)
20. Micheal Jordan (Michael Jordan)

If anything, there’s a problem with loose vowels.

But I especially like how, in the search results for Rachael Ray, Yahoo suggests searchers also try “rachael ray pictures,” “rachael ray sucks,” and “rachael ray show.”

I would have suggested Ms. Ray target those words for her website to protect her honor, but it looks like Slate beat her to it. But it’s also quite amazing that in a world as busy as this one, people actually take time out of their day to run a Rachael Ray hate community. She’s not exactly Kim Jong Il, I would think (but I’ve never heard of her before today).

Apparently “she is repetitive, she talks with her hands way too much, she giggles incessantly, she puts olive oil and chicken stock in everything, she wears really ugly clothing, she talks out of one side of her mouth like she’s had a stroke, she looks like ‘The Joker’ when she smiles, and she can’t stop talking about her family.”

Sakes alive! As my grandmother would say. There’s gotta be a better reason to hate somebody.


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