- The Washington Times - Sunday, October 30, 2016

Why would anyone want to associate “pathological lying” and Hillary Clinton?

For several hours starting about 10:30 p.m. Sunday, a Google search for the terms “pathological lying” was producing a picture of Mrs. Clinton.

The picture appeared as the illustration for what Google calls a special “featured snippet block” at the top of the page. The snippet quotes from, and includes a link to, the Wikipedia article for “pathological lying.”

By early Monday morning, the image had been removed from the Google search.

Part of what made the result odd is that while Mrs. Clinton has been accused of dishonesty and dissembling for the entire quarter-century since she became a national political figure as first lady, the Wikipedia article itself doesn’t mention her or any specific cases of dishonesty by her.

However, the Talk page at the Wikipedia article on the subject suggested the solution lay there.

One unnamed editor stated flatly that “Pathological lying = Hillary Clinton” a comment that was later deleted, as was an illustrative photo of Mrs. Clinton that the page reportedly contained at one point Sunday night.

According to Google’s description of the featured snippet, “when we recognize that a query asks a question, we programmatically detect pages that answer the user’s question, and display a snippet as a featured snippet in the search results.”

Mrs. Clinton’s picture did not ever appear in searches for “pathological liar” or “pathological lies.”

• Victor Morton can be reached at vmorton@washingtontimes.com.

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