The mayor of Eu, a town near Tréport on the coast of Upper Normandy, allegedly has a problem. He reckons people can’t find the place when they search for it in Google. Well, I don’t know what he was looking for, but I had no problems finding information on hotels etc. in Eu when I put in a few search terms.
This Google map shows where it is located and Googlemaps on Google UK and Google France had no problems finding it.
Various newspaper articles (e.g. The Times) on this subject have claimed that “On a French search engine, you get the past participle of the verb to have, while on English sites an interminable list of European Union websites appears.” Never one to take a newspaper’s word for it, I searched “Eu” on Google France. And the first result on the page was … http://www.ville-eu.fr/ . However, the UK version of Google did do as the article suggests and came up with a load of “European Union” related suggestions.
But if someone is putting “Eu” into the search engine in the first place, what exactly is the point of their search? A simple modification of the search to ‘town of Eu’ or ‘hotels in Eu’ or ‘Tourist office Eu’ will give relevant results.
Methinks the mayor has another agenda. Perhaps his problem is that he doesn’t like being called Maire d’Eu, which sounds disconcertingly like “merde”.