“The past is a foreign country. They do things differently there,” wrote the English novelist LP Hartley. Were he around today he might say: “The internet is a foreign country. Reality operates differently there.”
Imagine my surprise this week when I Googled the name of Labour’s Galway West candidate Derek Nolan and the first weblink that came up at the top of the page was, not Councillor Nolan’s site as you would expect, but the legend ‘Vote No 1 for Sean Kyne’ - a link to the website of Fine Gael’s Connemara based candidate.
So, you search out information on one candidate and the computer brings your attention to that of another? What is this? A bizarre internet glitch or a dastardly plan by some computer nerd (with a possible penchant for blue shirts ) trying to confuse the minds of cyber geeks?
This strange occurrence does not happen for Labour’s two Galway East candidates Colm Keaveney or Lorraine Higgins, both of whose homepages appear on top of the list of possible sites, after they have been Googled. Indeed, Cllr Nolan is the only one of the 17 Galway West candidates this happens with.
Seemingly if you buy an ad on Google, you can have it appear when certain words are Googled.
“Not Adam and Eve, after eating the apple, could have been more upset than I was,” is another quote from LP Hartley and Cllr Nolan may find himself quoting it if he tries out this little experiment for himself.