Chinese Girl’s Unwanted Encounters with Porn-Seekers

The Weekly Standard, July 23, 2012

“Creeps on My Website: The Dark Side of Search Engines”

–Article by Ying Ma

It was April 2011, and my book had just been published. Chinese Girl in the Ghetto is a memoir of my family’s journey from post-Mao China to inner-city America. The story celebrates freedom and individual responsibility, but it also describes the drug- and crime-plagued Oakland, California, of the 1980s that became our home, and it reports the discrimination that we, like many immigrants, encountered from other minorities.

I was prepared to get some hate mail. What I did not expect were the advertising links that Amazon.com displayed alongside my book.

To read the rest of the article, please click HERE.

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9 thoughts on “Chinese Girl’s Unwanted Encounters with Porn-Seekers

  1. Look on the bright side! If it weren’t for the problems with the advertisers, you wouldn’t have written the article in the Weekly Standard, and it could have even been longer before I ran across your website.

  2. Then you should look on the negative side and realize that this post, which includes the term “porn” is only going to increase the number of people who come here looking for porn. Now, if you could only find a way to turn that stream of visitors into cash!

    1. You’re absolutely right! If everyone who comes to this website looking for porn buys a copy of my book, I would be okay with that. But given the mismatch of what they’re looking for and what this website offers, turning that traffic into cash would require some new content that I’m not inclined or prepared to offer.

  3. If a man thinks that freckle-faced redheads are the best looking women, does that make him crass? If a guy says “I only wanna date blue-eyed blondes”, is he crass?

  4. Dear Ms. Ma,
    After reading your whine in the current Weekly Standard, I can only say welcome to the world of fame. Creeps on your website are a lot better than being dogged by paparazzi whenever you go out.

    There is a germane paragraph at the top right of page 286 in the current issue of American Scientist in the article “”The Manifest Destiny of Artificial Intelligence” which gives some perspective on your Google experience.
    Google Search is, after all, primarily a service for inquirers, not for authors and publishers.

  5. As a regular subscriber to the Weekly Standard, I found your article enlightening. My wife and I, both registered nurses, are never amused when searching nursing topics and getting similar hits as those ugly advertisements of which you speak. As a personal side note and in the spirit of our republic’s original federalism, not the perverted version promoted by SCOTUS, I honestly wish folks would stop hyphenating their ancestral or expatriate titles to their American citizenship. Rather, identify with one’s state residency. For example, I call myself a Texan-American, as do others regardless of race or ethnic origin. Although I understand and respect the pride of identifying with one’s ancestral and/or cultural background, using such titles provides a handy divisive tool for the socialist wannabe progressives in our lives. Being a lawyer, you know well that words do matter.

    Criminal justice professor, Dr. Kessler, welcomes input to his blog at http://crimelawandjustice.blogspot.com/. The professor is a personal friend. Tell him 44Shot informed you.

  6. I read this in the Weekly Standard. Thanks for speaking up.
    I hate seeing those types of advertisements that really have nothing to do with what I’m really searching for. It makes sense for Amazon to try to put related ads with a product, but obviously their algorithm needs to be much smarter.
    If I’ve searched for your book on Amazon, the likelihood that I would be interested in those sites would be very small.
    Of course, as bravoromeodelta said, the good side of this is that I might not have heard of your book if this problem hadn’t occurred and caused you to write this article.

  7. What is happening is the underneath software that is used in the browsers now.

    I was on a flight Columbus to Denver and sat next to a guy who actually design and sells this ad software. It uses key words and sites someone is visiting links it in. If I check your book, key words “girl” “ghetto” “China” will link together. And IF I was on sites that linked places that had words like “porn” “gay” “single” or such, then BAM, it pulls in things I might “LIKE”.

    When firms allow their sites to offer these search ad sites, it is a wild west condition. However, firms like Weekly Standard need revenue to pay for their site and can’t filter out these search ad firms that have a space sold to them.

    As happened to me, I was on united airline site trying to book a flight to Shanghai. Then I was on C-trip to book a hotel there. Well I was on Drudge and what popped up, ads from united on Asian trips and hotel offers by other sites. So it is all behind the scene search ad firms. This is just one example of the numerous linkage events happening.

    So people sending you hate mail on this don’t understand what the ad search firm industry are doing to the viewing public. I let my opinion be know to the guy who develops this ad search mess when I was on my flight to Denver.

    HEARD YOU tonight on the John Batchelor Show tonight. Probably a repeat as he is doing an all China items tonight (Saturday 11-Aug). If he loads it on podcast, maybe worth hearing. Lots of different China items and issues. You were first on the show. Now he covering Princelings…very interesting.

  8. I found you in The Conservative Forum of Silicon Valley website as I was scanning their site for the first time. I’m intrigue with your writings and comments on current world affairs. I watch the video posted on TCFSV website (June 2013), your introduction about yourself was wonderful. I’ll keep watch for more of your conservative stuff.

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