Jerame Davis

GoDaddy domain search - now with extra fruitiness

Filed By Jerame Davis | April 18, 2007 9:50 PM | comments

Filed in: Fundie Watch, The Movement
Tags: homophobic behavior

godaddy.jpgI have to wonder about the programmers behind the "Smart Search" feature on GoDaddy.com. (GoDaddy is an internet domain name registrar - they sell you domain names, like bilerico.com.)

Anyway, I was recently on my account at GoDaddy to transfer some domains and thought I'd do a quick search for a domain I had been considering registering. Of course it was taken - just about anything that is cool or that makes any real sense is already taken - so I went to it's "Smart Search" page to get some suggested alternatives that weren't already registered.

Apparently, one step in their search algorithm replaces words it recognizes in your original search and replaces those with other words that it is programmed to recognize as related to those words. What does that mean? That means that someone, somewhere, maybe in the bowels of GoDaddy created a "related words" dictionary that this thing creates its suggestions from.

My search was for GayGeeks.com. Don't ask why, just go with the story...

The search algorithm correctly identified Gay & Geeks as the two words I was squishing together. The results suggest an interesting bias in the related search terms.

Any kind of business sense tells me that someone searching for "gay" isn't going to be any happier with "fruity" or "fruitcake". Pretty much the same for those searching for "geek" and getting "dork" or "loser" as a result. There are certainly plenty of people who think gays are fruity and geeks are losers, but it's not like that those who identify as gay or geek think so.

Seems to me like some programmer somewhere has some issues with negative stereotypes. Hell, queer would be better than fruitcake. I'll take nerd over loser or dork any day.

You'll have to click the image to see all of the wonderful suggestions. My favorite is FruityLoser.com. What's yours?


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I think this is just a case of unfortunate coincidences. I don't really have a problem with "mo," "fruity," or "fruitcake" as synonyms for "gay." It's not like they said "queer" or "faggot." And some of the synonyms for "geek" are fine too. A "dork" isn't bad. "Bookworm" hasn't been an insult since the late 1800's... The worst one is "loser."

But that makes for truly crazy suggestions like GayOutcast.com or FruityGeeks.com or your fave, fruityloser.com... The best one tho is homosexualbookworms.com I might just buy that!

Homosexualbookworms.com - that sounds biological!

I'm surprised that they put "homosexual" in as an equivalent of "gay" and not "queer". I know a few sites that use queer in thier URLs, like queersighted and queerty, but I don't know a single one that uses "homosexual".

fruitcakeoddduck.com is my fave though. For reals, it makes no sense at all.

Zach Adamson | April 19, 2007 11:57 AM

Maybe we need to look a bit deeper into our own phobia's. I love fruit. All kinds of fruit. But I hate fruitcake. Is it ironic that I really hate being called fruitcake? I wonder...
But how these deprived geeks who sit in their grandmothers dark dank basements compiling this comparison dictionary, draw a line connecting gay and fruitcake isnt so much of a stretch. Even nerds need someone to hate.
Another odd thing to ponder.. Its interesting that they have come to abbreviate homosexual by just using the MO. as if Homo was too much effort. Can we start calling the non gays.. RO's for hetero?? I think I see a new trend.. Especially since I hate calling them straight.. as if I was some how crooked.. or misaligned. .. Yes.. .I think the new word is RO.. He's a Ro.. she's a Ro.. it does kinda roll right off the tongue. Now we can all just be either be MOs or ROs. Neither one sounds appealing, but I guess that's the point..

I've heard "Mo" for while. "Fruitcake" is still an insult, don't get me wrong, but it's a lot milder than just about anything else. I'm just saying that real insult would have been something like faggot-loser.com

I wondered about queer too, Alex. But I think the problem is that several of us still perceive that to be a really large insult - Queerty notwithstanding... While some of us love it and use it often, others despise it. It's definitely one I'd leave off the list of possibilities if I was GoDaddy...

Wow! It's strangely striking to me that the word queer is viewed by many here as insulting. I love the word queer, personally, and I think of it as having evolved quite a bit... unlike, say, "faggot." Is this difference in perception an age thing, or something of experience, and I'm wondering if it's viewed differently by gay men than by lesbian women? As a lesbian myself, I'm quite fond of the word queer. Just wondering?

I suppose, Bil. I guess a respectable business can't risk being the least bit edgy. I've seen enough scholarship that uses the word queer repeatedly to not really care about it. I took a class in college designed by a very aware lesbian called Queer Religiosities, so for me, obviously, it's a pretty cool word.

I do have to say that I find homosexual a lot more insulting, tho. It's pretty exclusive, focuses all on the sex, and its etymology, being a word created in Victorian times to describe being gay as a disease, is pretty insulting.

And what about fruitcake?

I wonder what godaddy would have as equivalents for "black", "white", "trans", or "women". that'd be pretty interesting to know.

A. J. Lopp | April 21, 2007 1:59 AM

I like Zach's idea that if homosexuals are "mo" then heterosexuals ought to be "ro".

Similarly, I think "faggot" should be shortened to "fo".

And now we have developed an entirely new meaning for the expression "mo-fo" ... I wonder how long it will take for this new meaning to show up in the lyrics of the hip-hop recording industry?

Or maybe it's the same meaning all over again? I mean, having sex with your own mother has always been a rather [homosexual = mama's boy = faggoty] thing to do, right?

Zach Adamson | April 23, 2007 10:41 PM

Or maybe it's the same meaning all over again? I mean, having sex with your own mother has always been a rather [homosexual = mama's boy = faggoty] thing to do, right?

Posted by: A. J. Lopp


You had me right up to the end.. I'll just have to take your word for that one.. :-)