Thursday, January 29, 2009

Wanted: Internet Expert

I am no expert on the matter and am hoping that maybe someone out there has some ideas on this matter.

The subject: Google Image Search

Issue: A good example of this isssue is if you search for 'Port City Music Hall' on google image search. The 4th result is currently a picture of me, the picture on my blog in the 'about me' section. Below the photo of me it says 'Port City Music Hall..." Clearly, my photo of this venue should show up here and not a picture of me. Am I doing something wrong when posting my images? If I remove the 'about me' section with my picture will I still have the 4th result but it will just be blank? There are many search phrases which show a picture of me instead of my blog.

The reward: You will be considered an Internet expert (by me at least).


  1. No it's nothing to do with you. Some image searches have my photos according to the search. Others have completely irrelevant photos that also appear on the same page of my website. It's just that the google image search program is a computer and is not run by people physically checking each and every image. I don't believe you can do anything to fix it, you'll still get people clicking on the link, they can then search your site for what they want.

    That's what I think anyway!
    Cheers, Melbourne.

  2. If you tag your images properly you can reduce the possibility for this to happen, but as John said there is no guaranty that the search engine won't misinterpret it. Basically it's looking for mention of the phrase and a picture. It has now way of knowing what the picture could be of. This is why tagging pics can be very important. What happens if you tag the photo of Port City Music Hall as that and tag your profile picture with your name?

  3. Yes, you'd better tag your photos properly first. But there is another trick that definitely works better. Go to your 'My Computer' and open a folder that you have your photos there. Right click on one of them. Go to properties. Open the summary tab. There is a text box named 'Title' there. If you write the name of image there and fill the rest of the form properly as what ever you like. The image will be shown up on the google image if someone search any of the key words you've used in that form. I hope this helps.

  4. Thanks for the comments and suggestions! I will try editing some of the titles and hope for the best in the future.

  5. If you're familiar with html, you can also edit the image's "alt" tag.

    In the code for your blog posts, each picture will be designated by something that looks like this:

    img src="" alt="Here's a picture"

    The "alt" part designates text that will show up when a user hovers their mouse over the photo, or when the image doesn't load for whatever reason (if the visitor is using a cellphone, for example).

    Google doesn't reveal how their image search works and its a bit of a mystery, but I believe the "alt" tags do play a role: if you describe your photos in depth, the search results will be better.

    Another idea would be to link your photos of the Port City Music Hall to the PCMH website - Google's search engine generally ranks its results based on how well-linked they are.

  6. It's been a mystery to me. I know if the search Washington DC photos my site is on the first page, but nowhere on the images results. Maybe I'll try embedding the files with keywords - there is a the whole IPTC standard, but I'm not sure if Google uses it.