Having your name or contact information associated with an incorrect Google search is never fun. Unfortunately, for David Peck, it gets a bit worse than that.
Peck, through no fault of his own, managed to somehow have his email address associated with searches for the word "Gmail" during the most unfortunate time one could think of to be matched up against that term: Friday's temporary Gmail outage that follows a string of downtime glitches from last year.
Even stranger, the outage wasn't the source of Peck's unlucky association. Google recently released the following statement about the seemingly overflowing email accounts of Peck and others who have been caught up in the Gmail linking glitch.
"Due to a technical glitch, some email addresses on public webpages appeared too prominently in search results. We've fixed the issue and are sorry for any inconvenience caused," reads a statement provided by Google.
The glitch – or whatever exactly happened – started around Thursday night when Peck started receiving hundreds of "no-subject, blank emails." Little did he know, Google had mistakenly associated his Hotmail address with the "Email" link that appeared underneath the very first search result for "Gmail" whenever one searched for that phrase on Google. A previous report by Search Engine Land commented that it also worked for the "Google mail" link that appeared under the primary "Gmail" search result.
While Search Engine Land's Barry Schwartz didn't get David Peck when he clicked the link, plenty seem to have; Peck's inbox swelled up to 1,900 emails as of Friday morning, and who knows how many he might have received once Gmail became the talk of the tech town Friday afternoon.
According to TechCrunch, multiple people were allegedly affected by the issue, but it's unclear just how many random email addresses in total were populated into the hyperlink. Peck seems to be the minor Internet celebrity for Google's mess-up, mainly due to TechCrunch being able to contact him directly — via a Google search of his email address, of course.
Hello, privacy annoyance. Here's hoping someone has showed Peck how to "select all" messages in his inbox, though we predict he's still in for an annoying afternoon of cleanup.