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July 11, 2008 / Upnishad

Swastika Appears On Google Trends

A number of people noticed a swastika (卐) on the hot trends list of Google Trends this morning.

Google took the site down with a message that it was undergoing
network maintenance and should be available again in a few hours. Then,
minutes later, the site was back up, with the swastika still listed as
the thirteenth hottest search term.

Google Trends says the query peaked at about 6 am Pacific. The query
is actually a Chinese character, but the trends list that it shows up
for is U.S. searches. It looks like a successful spamming attempt, but
given the number of queries Google handles it looks to be pretty
sophisticated – at one point it was the number one query. We’ve pinged Google for a comment.

Update: It’s now been removed or has fallen off the hot trends list.

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