This Holiday Shopping Season, Searching Google For “Pearl Necklace” Leads To NSFW Surprise

google-new-logo-tinyThose using Google to find the perfect pearl necklace for their significant other this holiday season may be in for a rude surprise. If you search for “pearl necklace,” one of the top results is a definition from Urban Dictionary, which is completely not safe for work.

A reader sent us an email about the shock she felt when she saw this search result appearing at the top of Google Canada results (on Google.com, we see it in position two). Here is a screen shot of the result, with the snippet blocked out.

pearlnecklace-google-ca

This does not come up on the first page when searching on Bing for [pearl necklace].

Last year, Google introduced a change so that adult content wouldn’t appear even if its SafeSearch wasn’t switched on, unless people were clearly explicitly seeking such content by using more specific terms. This, in fact, prevented an Urban Dictionary page from showing before. Our stories below have more about this:

So is this algorithm broken?

We have reached out to Google for a comment on this and will update the story as soon as we hear back.

Postscript on December 12th at 9am EDT: Google has still not responded to our request for a comment but it appears that sometime yesterday afternoon, Google has dropped urbandictionary.com’s search result from this set.

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