Google hires creator of notorious 4chan forum

Chris Poole Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Chris Poole stepped down as administrator of 4chan in January 2015

Google has hired the creator of one of the web's most notorious forums - 4chan.

Chris Poole - known as "moot" online - created the site in 2003.

It has gone on to be closely associated with offensive and often illegal activity, including instances where the images of child abuse were shared.

It was widely credited as being the first place where leaked images of nude celebrities were posted following 2014's well-publicised security breach affecting Apple's iCloud service. That incident prompted a policy change on the site.

However, 4chan has also been the rallying point for many instances of online activism from the likes of Anonymous, the loosely organized hacktivism group.

'Next chapter'

Mr Poole shared news of his new position on blogging site Tumblr.

"When meeting with current and former Googlers, I continually find myself drawn to their intelligence, passion, and enthusiasm - as well as a universal desire to share it with others."

"I'm also impressed by Google's commitment to enabling these same talented people to tackle some of the world's most interesting and important problems.

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Stolen pictures of Jennifer Lawrence were among those first shared on the 4Chan website

He added: "I can't wait to contribute my own experience from a dozen years of building online communities, and to begin the next chapter of my career at such an incredible company."

Mr Poole stepped down as the administrator of 4chan in January 2015. Now he is expected to turn his attentions to Google's social networking efforts.

His arrival was welcomed by Bradley Horowitz, the head of "streams, photos and sharing" at the search giant's floundering social network, Google+.

"I'm thrilled he's joining our team here at Google," Mr Horowitz said.

"Welcome Chris!"

Several commentators described the appointment as "unexpected" but noted that Mr Poole's expertise with social media could prove useful to the search firm.

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