Urban Dictionary, a crowdsourced reference work, is one of the world's most popular websites.
Founded in 1999 by Californian computer science student Aaron Peckham, the site was originally intended as a parody of real dictionaries: works Peckham found to be "stuffy, [which] take themselves too seriously".
Some 20 years on, the site is now serious business: its work is referenced in linguistics textbooks, and its entries — which anyone can upload — have been relied upon in by public health academics, Australian parliamentarians, and US lawyers alike.
In many cases, they are also extraordinarily racist.
A problem of definition
Until yesterday, Urban Dictionary's top entry for the word Aboriginal contained references to substance abuse, crime and welfare dependency.
According to the site's crude rating system, more than 5,000 people had "liked" the entry. It had been the most popular for seven years.
That wasn't the only offensive entry: it was followed by dozens more.
Below each entry, Urban Dictionary offers users the option of buying a mug emblazoned with that definition. During the checkout dialogue, a banner ad proudly informs the user that over 10,000 such mugs have been sold.
"It's blatant racism," says Summer May Finlay, who was first alerted to the entries after a friend posted a screenshot to Facebook.
Ms Finlay — a Yorta Yorta woman who works as a journalist in the health sector — says Urban Dictionary's reputation as a less serious internet platform does not absolve the site's moderators any responsibility for its entries.
"I don't distinguish between racism and the platform where those views are aired," she says.
Urban Dictionary quietly removed offensive entries under Aboriginal after a campaign from Finlay and prominent Indigenous social media pages.
"I'd be happy if they acknowledged these posts were inappropriate," Findlay says.
Should dictionaries be offensive?
In 2011, Peckham told his alma mater magazine that "offensive words exist in the language and should be in Urban Dictionary".
"When someone hears a racial slur on the street, they should be able to look it up in and find out what it means," he said.
In this, Peckham is in league with most modern lexicography — even the relatively staid Oxford English Dictionary contains comprehensive entries for racial slurs.
But Aboriginal is neither a slang word nor a racial slur.
As Victoria Morgan, a senior editor at the Macquarie Dictionary, points out, it's not even in Urban Dictionary's hazily-defined scope.
According to Ms Morgan, section of Urban Dictionary's community long ago shed any pretence of being interested in amateur lexicography.
"It's a dumping ground, it's a place to put comment or opinions. There's no control, no research."
According to Urban Dictionary's terms of service, users may not publish anything unlawful or "detrimental to the quality" of the Urban Dictionary experience — though the site waives any responsibility for monitoring of content, or blocking of pernicious users.
There is a process for flagging entries for review — though as the company's LinkedIn page states, all editors are volunteers.
Lexicographers do occasionally consult Urban Dictionary — "It gives proof of usage, to a point," Morgan says — but they stress the website has a responsibility to ensure entries aren't fictitious, or at the very least aren't strangely long-winded racist screeds.
"Removing one entry isn't going to make one bit of difference," Ms Morgan says.
Removal just the beginning
At time of writing, dozens of offensive definitions continue to exist for a variety of topics.
Women's rights, going by their top definition, are "a joke, just like black power". Entries for other ethnic groups, women and LGBTI people contain similar vilification.
Urban Dictionary did not respond to the ABC's requests to comment.
This is not the first time the site has been criticised for tacitly endorsing sexism, racism, or offensive content. Nor is it the only online community dogged by such claims.
Wikipedia — a site Aaron Peckham has often compared Urban Dictionary to — has long been accused of gender bias, as has Reddit and 4chan.
For Ms Finlay, the offensive remarks left in Urban Dictionary are symptomatic of a wider negative attitude towards Indigenous Australians.
"This is not the only inappropriate comment out there. We hear them from our politicians — from commentators," she says.
"It doesn't surprise me that people feel entitled to make such horrible and negative comments."
Tiger Webb is a researcher with ABC Language.