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Les Albiston, Google and the Multinational Corporations


John Simkin
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The International School of Toulouse is currently involved in a bitter dispute. The head teacher, Les Albiston, has recently sacked two members of staff, Richard Jones-Nerzic and Tanya Carlile. This is only the latest in a series of sackings that have taken place because Les Albiston does not like anyone to question his authority. The full story can be read here:

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=9029

The parents and staff are united in their attempts to get these two teachers reinstated. Richard Jones-Nerzic is one of the world’s leading figures in the use of ICT in history and his case has also been taken up by the international teaching community.

Two main groups of people are likely to carry out searches for the International School of Toulouse: (1) Parents thinking of sending their children to the school; (2) Teachers thinking of working at the school.

I thought it is only reasonable that these parents and students should be aware of the problems at the school. I created a page on Les Albiston and the International School.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/LesAlbiston.htm

It was no surprise that within a few days, if you typed in “Les Albiston”, at Google, my page on the dispute came first. This issue was discussed on a couple of forums, including this one. Several members confirmed this was the case.

A couple of days later I was informed by someone who had been discussing this case, informed that my page on Les Albiston no longer appeared at the top of the list at Google when doing a search on Google. When I checked it out I found this to be true. Nor did it seem to be in the database at all. However, on the second page of results, my page where I gave it a link, showed up.

I also have a facility for using Google to search my own website. The page on “Les Albiston” did not appear in that search either. It seemed that the page had been removed from the Google database.

I then created a new page on the subject. Within a couple of days that also appeared top at Google. However, the next day it had been removed from its database.

The same thing has happened to other friends of Richard Jones-Nerzic who have websites and have created pages on Les Albiston. Their pages appeared at the top of the rankings before quickly disappearing.

This has happened before with “Bernardo De Torres”. However, he was a CIA agent who is still being protected by the agency. What could the explanation be for the removal of a page on a head teacher in Toulouse? The school is owned by Europe’s largest defence contractor. Could that be the answer?

If so, Google cannot be trusted to carry out objective searches. For example, my page appears first in the first couple at Yahoo, All the Web, Netscape, MSN, AOL Search, LookSmart, etc.

At the moment someone has fooled Google censorship by producing this page:

http://lesliealbiston.tripod.com/index.html

It will be interesting to see how long this page remains at the top.

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Mr Simkin,

That's really strange. You obviously know more than me about how these search engines work and how they list their results - will Google be censoring the page because of the number of hits, or something like that? Or have the pages actually been manually taken down by people who don't want them there? It is disconcerting to think that Google could censor things in this way!

I'm intrigued. Have you heard anything more from Mr Albiston or the school about how the case is going and what they think their future actions will be? Maybe we will all have to wait until the court case in February before knowing what else we (as the community who support Mr Jones) can do.

Your help on this subject has been truly amazing!

Hannah

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Guest Stephen Turner

Hannah, as John said in his post these "removals" tend to occur when sensitive information is posted, or sought on characters with an agency background, I believe the CIA has been pulling the levers at Google since inception. But whilst this sensorship is understandable, if reprehensible, around people like De Torres, it becomes just plain wierd when applied to Headmasters...Steve.

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Hannah, as John said in his post these "removals" tend to occur when sensitive information is posted, or sought on characters with an agency background, I believe the CIA has been pulling the levers at Google since inception. But whilst this sensorship is understandable, if reprehensible, around people like De Torres, it becomes just plain wierd when applied to Headmasters...Steve.

Not one the headmaster works for Airbus which is owned by EADS, the second-largest European arms manufacturer after BAE Systems, which up until recently owned 20% of Airbus. See my posts on the relationship that BAE Systems has with Tony Blair and the Iraq War.

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=9094

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My page on "Les Albiston" is back in number one place at Google. Juan Carlos' page is number 2. The Education Forum is 4th and the E-HELP website is 6th and Anders' page is 9th. Also my page on Les is 6th when you type in "International School of Toulouse". Les is no longer being protected. Does not surprise me. Google cannot afford to be seen as someone who imposes censorship. The same thing happened when they removed "Bernardo De Torres" and "John McClone" from my database. I mounted a campaign via several forums and they were soon put back.

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Headmaster > Airbus > EADS > Tony Blair > US Government > CIA > Google. That would have to go through some of the most powerful corporations and people in the world - all for 5 or 6 webpages protesting a teacher's dismissal?

Such a conspiracy sounds extremely unlikely, to say the least. A more logical explanation would be that in some way you triggered a Google filter, that thought you were spamming or trying to rig page rankings (Which would be more likely, since multiple copies of the same text were pasted on various different websites around the world within days). Maybe they have filters for removing pages that attempt to take advantage of Google for smear campaigns. Could be one of quite a few different explanations, really.

Though I think that Google being told to remove pages about a headmaster by the CIA is, well, amusing. Unless Mr. Albiston is an undercover CIA operative? Even more amusing.

Edited by Ben Durrant
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Such a conspiracy sounds extremely unlikely, to say the least. A more logical explanation would be that in some way you triggered a Google filter, that thought you were spamming or trying to rig page rankings (Which would be more likely, since multiple copies of the same text were pasted on various different websites around the world within days). Maybe they have filters for removing pages that attempt to take advantage of Google for smear campaigns. Could be one of quite a few different explanations, really.

If it is a case of a "spamming filter" why did the pages reappear at the top of searches at Google today. It seems a very ineffective way of dealing with spammers.

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Such a conspiracy sounds extremely unlikely, to say the least. A more logical explanation would be that in some way you triggered a Google filter, that thought you were spamming or trying to rig page rankings (Which would be more likely, since multiple copies of the same text were pasted on various different websites around the world within days). Maybe they have filters for removing pages that attempt to take advantage of Google for smear campaigns. Could be one of quite a few different explanations, really.

If it is a case of a "spamming filter" why did the pages reappear at the top of searches at Google today. It seems a very ineffective way of dealing with spammers.

http://www.google.com/contact/spamreport.html

Maybe somebody reported it as spam; and google's filters figured out that it actually wasn't?

It's all speculation, really.

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