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Thursday, January 03, 2008

Amusing Findings in Keywords

Quick update (1/5/2008) - I feel much better now - 3 people have searched and found me through the highly relevant search - incredibly cool elearning guy ... thanks for helping out my mental state. Maybe I would have been in a better mood when I made my Ten Predictions for 2008.

Interestingly, Google has managed to find this particular post as the one that is most relevant to that term. So the comment that I may be messing with search results and making myself even more lame seems to be turning out correct. While I had dismissed it, I'm now no longer #1 for the search - top ten lamest people - even though I was yesterday before Google spidered this page. I'm still considered the worst learner, an innovation laggard, etc. But at least I'm not top ten lamest people!
People search in order to find information. The job of a search engine is to put the most relevant results at the top. When you plug in search terms, the engine tells us what it considers to be the most relevant results.

So, if you rank high in Google's results for a particular term (that people search on), you can see what the engine thinks are relevant terms for you.

For me, the good news is that I rank #1 for terms such as:
  • tony karrer
  • elearning technology
  • best elearning blog
The last one made me happy. Of course, there's the downside ... Below are some of the search terms that people used to find my blog and where Google considers me to be the #1 result ...
  • worst learner
  • laggard in technology innovation
  • bad day elearning
  • corporate training sucks
  • worst presentation award
  • bad things about e-learning
  • worst learning experience
  • beer elearning
  • bad rfp requirements
  • wasting time on technology
And my personal favorite where I rank #1 is:
  • top ten lamest people
Don't believe that Google thinks I'm the "top ten lamest people" or "worst learner" ... Try it yourself.

Should this worry me?

Luckily, I'm also #1 in "incredibly cool elearning guy" ...

(Of course, no one was kind enough to search on that term and then click on my blog).


Anonymous said...

One of my favorite search phrases was "project managers who think they're instructional designers." It made me giggle.

Anonymous said...

I want to know how you became the top rated "beer eLearning". You must party hard!

john said...

Tony, your post intrigued and it also gave me the best laugh today. It is so refreshing to see an educational blogger that does not take themselves so seriously!

And Christy, one of my worst nightmares was a job where the project managers decided what was good and bad instructional design. I was so glad to get out of there.

Cheers, John

Jaz said...

Well, I just have...
Enjoy... ;-)

Anonymous said...

Tony, Keep up the good work. But, I think that by posting those phrases in your blog, you are only reinforcing your google ranking as one of the "top ten lamest people". Don't worry, I don't think you are that lame.

I know that I sometimes find it interesting when I see the seach terms used to find my website, but I don't think that I ever had such an interesting list. I would be interested to know why someone would search for "beer elearning". I do remember seeing a good cbt companion to the Beer Hunter a few years ago.

Tony Karrer said...

I'm glad a few of you have the same (weird) sense of humor that I do. :)

Rich - I think it's because I've helped organize the blogger beer events at a couple of conferences. Plus, Google knows I like beer. :)

Mike B - Hopefully it doesn't reinforce that ranking (I actually don't think it will unless people link to me using that term or something like that).

And what really made me laugh was Mike saying -

"Don't worry, I don't think you are that lame."

With friends like that who needs enemies?

Philip said...


Excellent post. Made me chuckle.

wslashjack said...

Hate to get serious on you, Tony, but this brings up a question for me. I'm searching for the right term for what a lot of us do when we do EPSS type solutions.

We could use EPSS as a term, but it seems a bit old, and a bit engineering-like. So, for some time, we have added "ecoaching" to our "elearning" offering, to describe our electronic support options. Now, go to get plenty of hits if you search ecoaching, or eperformance, for that matter, but they mostly do not have to do with anything related to elearning.

Searching on eperformance I ran across your 2003 LearningCircuits blog entries (E-Performance Essentials) separating eperformance into edevelopment, einteraction and esupport.

Do these still hold to you (a search on esupport or e-support gets you mostly remote software support sources)? It seems like no term has taken such a firm grasp as elearning, to describe what we think is a real value-add for our clients.

Anonymous said...

You should be happy to know that at least in Canada, at, you safe with "top ten lamest people"

Popular Mechanics gets the nod...

Anonymous said...

While you had a reason to do so, I just have to wonder how many people actually did a search for "ten lamest people" and why. Then I think of my kids in school when their teacher isn't watching...what are some of their searches and will I show up one day on them (you know, Meanest parent, number one parent that doesn't understand, top ten lamest people).