What do Sanger CA, Chantilly VA and Linthicum Heights MD Have in Common?

I came across a suspicious trend while looking at some of Google’s hot searches and wonder who or what may be the culprit.

The Internets /

18 August 2011


Perplexing case. For some reason, Sanger CA, Chantilly VA, and Linthicum Heights MD have the highest traffic density for some of Google’s top search trends today. Not for specific keywords either – for seemingly unrelated, commonplace searches like:

  • used cars
  • the daily show
  • grocery stores
  • election news
  • post offices
  • fried chicken
  • malls
  • parks
  • city hall
  • dentists
  • dry cleaning
  • florists
  • used books

Something is going on.

These are all big-bucket search terms that are highly sought after and hardly ever searched for by themselves. There is no reason why these hamlets ( should be generating a spike in search traffic large enough to trip the Google Trends index.

I will report if I can get to the bottom of this…


3 Responses to “What do Sanger CA, Chantilly VA and Linthicum Heights MD Have in Common?”

  1. Jonathan says:

    Any new findings? I was so confused yesterday, but to find that it’s still like this today…any ideas?

    • rob says:

      Hey Jonathan – no insight yet. I posted on Quora (http://goo.gl/VMQ74) and haven’t got any word back there. On Google + one guy I know mentioned that NSA and CIA are near a couple of the locations – but that’s just silly. These towns dont seem to sit atop any major web backbone.

      What would be the possible advantage of deploying a ‘search’ bot from specific IP’s in these locations for such mundane terms?

    • Jonathan says:

      Not only did it suddenly show up and then continue through today, it seems to have suddenly ended. Weird.

      Clearly something was up, but there’s no easy intuitive answer. I have no idea what the possible reasons are for this.

      We may never know—this will haunt me forever.


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