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Opinion InMarket: CJK5H, it's the bomb

InMarket: CJK5H, it’s the bomb

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Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

Robert Francis


If you have a great desire to purchase a purple T-shirt that has “CJK5H” on the front, head to The Varsity, an off-campus retailer of Texas Christian University merchandise at 3515 Bluebonnet Circle.  What’s that you say? You don’t know why you would want to purchase a T-shirt with “CJK5H” emblazoned on it? Get hip to the Google bomb. What’s a Google bomb you say? Well, head over to Google and type in Craig James, the former Southern Methodist University football star, NFL running back, ESPN analyst, Mike Leach nemesis and failed U.S. Senate candidate. You will quickly be given an option to search for “Craig James killed five hookers while at SMU.”

That my friends is a Google bomb. It is basically a way to trick Internet search engines into making an innocent search term, in this case Craig James, become associated with some other term that usually casts aspersions on the innocent term. Apparently Craig James has riled up enough people for a variety of reasons – his Leach confrontation, his right-leaning political views, etc. – to cause people to create the Google bomb with his name. Scant internet fingerprints seem to point to rabid, geeky, Red Raider football fans who blame James for Leach’s exit at the West Texas school. James’ son, if you recall, spurred an investigation of Coach Leach that led to the popular and successful coach being pointed toward the exit sign.  

The fact that the patently untrue accusation is also “humorous,” particularly among the college crowd, has probably helped give the bomb legs. During his brief Senate run, James  had to address the bizzare accusation. 

The “CJK5H” acronym has since taken on a life of its own. According to the sports blog Deadspin, Mike Leach, signed a copy of his book Swing Your Sword, with the abbreviation. Now it’s a T-shirt designed to mock SMU students, few of whom have probably even heard of Craig James as they bar-hop along Greenville Ave. in their BMWs listening to Grouplove.

So, in case you’ve been in a Google-less cave for the past few years, now you know. The T-shirt is a thinly-veiled thumbing of the nose towards the Mustangs, TCU’s opponent this weekend.  This was apparently why the Internet was invented. 

InMarket takes a look at local issues and events. 

Contact rfrancis@bizpress.net  


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