ISPs in NZ filtering Google Search Results?
Something strange happened today. A mate of mine told me one of my blog posts rated at the top of Google’s search list (it was for Telecom Micro Sim, click on the link to see). WOOWHOO! I thought. I mean, ‘thanks for letting me know’ I said.
Anyway, I mentioned that I often got quite high up in google rankings, even beating regular media or web site of a product I reviewed. I used the Golf-R (a car for anyone that doesn’t know) as an example. I told him on Google.co.nz I was the second to top term for Golf-R, beating even the AA review, and also Volkswagen’s own NZ web site (they make the car). My friend changed and said “No you don’t, you don’t even come in the top five (it comes in no 8 – although the article he found was not the same that was #2 on my list).
What’s going on?
Auckland, Telecom ISP
Christchurch, TelstraClear ISP
This is the search we both used. Click on the images above to see the enlarged version. You will see on the right the blackandwhite.co.nz post is #2. On the left a DIFFERENT blackandwhite.co.nz post is #8.
A couple of things to confirm:
- Both searches used google.co.nz (you can see the “Pages from New Zealand” at the top of both)
- Both searches used Mozilla
- Both were made at the same time (and repeated several times)
- One was made in Auckland through a Telecom ISP, one through Christchurch on Telstra Clear ISP
- One was on a PC (Auckland), one on a Mac (Christchurch) – the only other difference perhaps?
- Interesting the Telstra Search gets 47850 compared to 47600 on Telecom.
So this is WEIRD. I couldn’t think what it could be. Then I remembered seeing an article on TechDirt about ISP filtering search results, redirecting search terms etc. That article is an interesting read!
I then further checked with my mate in Auckland and sent him the exact link I used for my Golf-R search over MSN so he just clicked on it. I thought this would fix it, but no, he still got the same result (i.e. different from me). So SOMETHING is modifying the Google results he gets (or something is modifying mine).
Try it yourself – which one to you get, or do you get a third result? Comment away please! (Use this link if you like to check - make sure you use google.co.nz too and select “pages from NZ”)!). Let me know what ISP you used, and what results you get.
I THINK .. and I could be wrong here that Telecom is filtering things. They shouldn’t, but they do. But I cant prove this (not yet anyway!). Well I can prove something – they get LESS search results (you can see from the # of searches it shows), so there is SOME filtering going on here.
UPDATE 1: Confirmed now from someone that they get the “Telecom” result when either connected to Telecom through Xtra, or connected to the Telecom LAN (yes they work for Telecom).
Black and White Version: New Zealand based ISPs (Telecom in particular) may be filtering Google Search results. BASTARDS!
- Tech companies – the round up
- Telecom to release an iPad killer – yeah right!
- Voicemail on XT with iPhone 4
- Telecom – great deal, but too many steps
- Vodafone – the good and the bad and the bullshit
- OMG might Telecom actually be cool?
- Most unusual search term to find this blog
- Yellow Pages – straight in the bin!
- Mobile Termination Rates Will be Regulated in New Zealand
- iPad dataplans in NZ (updated for 2Degrees)