You know things are bad when something's value is predicated by its standing in the Google search rankings, but that's exactly what's happening down at the Cornish town of Penryn - apparently consigned to oblivion by Intel's chip of the same name.
This is Cornwall explains: "A week ago, typing Penryn into the Google search engine...would have immediately brought up information about the Cornish town in the top position. But now Penryn is slipping down the ratings as hordes of computer users around the world click on to find out more information about the new range of Intel computer processors."
Oh dear. Kevin Pickup, big cheese down at i-webmarketing, "a Cornish company which helps firms optimise their search engine position", explained the possible apocalyptic implications of the cyber-relegation: "This is going to be a huge problem for Penryn businesses. Although the chip isn't even on the market yet, there's already a huge buzz. Web pages relating to the Intel Penryn are starting to displace local businesses in the search results.
"As people who search the internet rarely look past the first couple of pages of results, the Cornish websites will effectively disappear from search engines."
Of course, Intel will rename Penryn (the chip) in due course, but that could come too late for Penryn (the town). Pickup continued: "Even if they announce a new name, it will take up to a year for it to come off the placements. Businesses need to look at their keywords and maybe change a few things."
Intel has moved quickly to assure Penrynians that they will not be forced to shut up shop and move to a more Google-prominent location. The UK's Intel marketing manager Chris Hogg offered: "It's just a codename that we're using - we have no plans whatsoever to use it as a brand. Once we start using the official product name, people will quickly stop using the codename. Cornwall is one of my favourite holiday destinations and I think Penryn is a delightful town." ®