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Google blacks out story on 9/11?

It seems that Google is trying to black out a story posted on the website 9/11 Eyewitness, about New York Times 9/11 Censorship. You can view the stories in the Google Cache here. Notice that two of the stories on that page are blacked out. You can read the blacked out stories here and here.

When you read the first story, the need for blacking it out becomes clear:

Is the American Press still Free?

This was the title of a controversial presentation at a prestigious press club in Tokyo, Japan, Tuesday, March 14. The New York Times Tokyo Bureau Chief, Jim Brooks, said that he couldn’t attend an official press function about 9/11 or he would be fired. Coincidentally, the Reuters Bureau chief, Daniel Sloan, was also a strong opponent to the event being held, but he and Brooks were voted down by international members and the event was able to go ahead.

Webmaster and creator of the 9/11 Eyewitness video, Rick Siegel, posted more on this here, including a screenshot of the Google cache.

As Siegel notes, it is very strange that two of the cells on that page are blacked out. His site is database driven with an automatic CMS, and they don’t do any HTML coding by hand, so it is very strange that only two of the cells are blacked out. He adds that obviously it had to be done by hand.

A quick look at the HTML reveals that in the code, a “< /table>” tag has been replaced by “< /ta< /b>ble& gt;” which causes one of the tables not to close, and causing that table to take the background color of the previous table, which is black, thus blacking out the story.

If this is by accident, it is a very strange bug in Google’s software since it only happened with the top two stories, which perhaps by chance (?) are also the most controversial. I wonder what Google has to say about this?

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