TV Nopes

Apparently, Google Is None Too Keen on TV Tropes’ Rape-Related Content

This has all the makings of the perfect Internet shitstorm.
buffy the vampire slayer 3 Apparently, Google Is None Too Keen on TV Tropes Rape Related Content

Reached for comment, Buffy the Vampire Slayer said, “They did WHAT?”

TV Tropes is one of the Internet’s greatest K-holes, thanks to its mind-bogglingly thorough chronicling of basically everything that’s ever happened more than three times in popular culture. So you’ll find everything from Amusing Alien to Achilles in His Tent (and that’s just the As).

But it’s not just light and fluffy stuff, either: The wiki also includes quite a few tropes related to rape, like  like Rape as Backstory and Rape as Drama, all of which are this index. And apparently, that particular corner of the site has been getting TV Tropes into hot water with Google.

The Mary Sue reports that, last week, admins nuked every single page in the index, replacing them with the message, “We do not want a page on this topic. It does not meet our content policy.” Owner and admin “Fast Eddie” basically blamed AdWords, saying the pages’ content was getting TV Tropes “in trouble with Google.” Google considers its network “family safe” and therefore doesn’t allow its ads on sites with “adult content.”

Fast Eddie told the forum:

“There is no explanation needed beyond the fact that the topic is a pain in the ass to keep clean and it endangers the wiki’s revenues. We just won’t have articles about rape. Super easy. No big loss.”

As of right now, though, the content has reappeared, with the notice that, “Rape tropes have been restored without Google Ads. To prevent further trouble, the tropes in question will be cleaned and then locked.”

It’s not entirely clear where that leaves the objectionable content and whether such a compromise will be enough to pacify the GOOG. But one would think a company so desirous of indexing all the world’s information would be willing to work something out.

Follow Kelly Faircloth on Twitter or via RSS. kfaircloth@observer.com