Why We Need to Teach Google Search

and Computer Literacy.

10 or so days ago...during the Snowpocalypse 2010 ...something amazing happened on the interwebs. a meme was born! the awesome technology blog Read Write Web wrote a posting about Facebook and AOL getting together to be the one true login.

and then the problems started.
Internet un-aware people who don't know how to type in a URL, make a toolbar button or a bookmark and just Google to get everywhere were upset and distraught because when they typed in

Facebook Login

they got the RWW blog......and they started whining. then screaming. incoherently and sometimes with bad language! (be careful if you show these to teens) and with MANY typographical & grammar errors.... 1800+ comments later of "where's my facebook i want it back!" of pure Internet comedy gold MEME happened and the people at RWW couldn't understand why their traffic was going HAYwire!
apparently the GOOGLE search result of Facebook and Login was the 2nd from the top result AS the article! People thought FB had changed its format again but couldn't figure out how to login. Hilarity Ensued.

This is a teachable moment people. It's not just WHAT you Google but it's HOW you READ the page when you get there! And what about computer literacy???

"Thank you for all of the new features, Facebook owner-guy! I am especially fond of all the articles that you have published here. Where were they all this time?! What I wanted out of Facebook all this time were reports on current trends and products that would affect me and other high-tech geeks. Thanks for getting rid of all that Farmville crap... not sure why you ever thought that was a good idea anyway!" /sarcasm

Obviously, the RWW readers started striking back.
A perfect storm of Internet iD10T errors collided with the tech savvy AND SNARKY crowd of readers at Read Write Web! And the regulars sent their tech savvy friends to the comment board as still MORE and MORE lost and angry people kept commenting!

Honestly, read as many as you can....BUT Cover your keyboard with Saran wrap if you read this at lunch or are sipping coffee. You. Have. Been. Warned.

Facebook Wants to Be Your One True Login

another classic quote:
"LMFAO! This has to be the biggest facepalm in the history of the Internet"..

"Read/Write Web are being very polite about their incident and resisting the urge to mock. They wrote a follow-up post saying:

“We could laugh (and we did), but we could also consider that these are our customers and users – the people we make the Web for. How can we balance making the Web simple enough for all users while still creating tech cool enough to satisfy geeks like us?”

A day later, another post was published saying the whole thing was Google’s fault:

“Google had completely failed its users. It put us, with a post about how an AOL partnership foreshadowed Facebook becoming the de facto user database, above the most logical search result possible – Facebook’s login page.” -

I can see RWW’s point but I think they’re going a little far in their effort to be understanding. Facebook has 400 million users. Only a fraction of a fraction of a fraction of those users mistook Read/Write Web, with its bright red masthead that, unsurprisingly, says Read/Write Web on it, for Facebook – a site that looks completely different and says Facebook on it." - UK's Shane Richmond

Oh and for a lesson on Computer ETHICS:

Clueless Woman Calls Tech Show When Her Stolen Wi-FI Disappears ...

Related Articles:
The Internet Inept Mistake ReadWriteWeb for Facebook, Hilarity Ensues
Reminder Of Who's On The Web: I Just Want To Login To Facebook!!!
Facebook Login Fiasco Demonstrates Challenge in Competing with Google
Facebook login, Cancel Google and the perfect storm of idiots


  1. Yes, this is a teachable moment. Clearly, most Internet users, and even most supposedly tech-savvy students, do not know how to find, evaluate & use information. But your fallacy is in stating that "we need to teach Google search." Google is but one tool for finding information on the Internet, and a crude one at that. Yet students think it's a magical answer machine to which they should always optimistically turn first in the hope that it will spit out the answer in the first two results. And your post buttresses that belief.

  2. Well, the post title was what i would call a "grabber"...I both agree and disagree with you.
    Of course Google is but one search engine....We also teach database searching with Gale, Sirs, etc

    But i think we're putting our heads in the sand if we think our kids aren't using Google on their own without the skills to narrow, evaluate, and choose the right results. ...we Should be allowed to teach them advanced Google searching skills so that they are more savvy researchers....Really it IS about Computer literacy - but then again, i'm a longtime Google fangrrl!

    Mark, as someone who works for a search website for students (http://www.sweetsearch.com/) i understand why you would have this opinion. Thanks for your comment, i love a friendly debate! Even ones that are commercially motivated!


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