Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Is Google racist? Or is this just a prank?

Received this via a forwarded email the other day, entitled "Google is so racist!"

It's pretty funny I guess, depending on how you look at it. But is it real?

Of course, being a inquisitive kind of fellow, I tried typing "white people stole my car" into Google and it didn't work as in the picture. But apparently heaps of other people have tried it as well (indeed, so many people were curious and were testing it out that the phrase turned up among Google's trending topics). Because what Google did produce from that search was lots of articles about the phenomenon of people typing the phrase into Google. I like the irony in that, its like watching surveillance footage of people watching surveillance footage.

Strangely, some of the websites you might click on if you search for that phrase are infected with spyware. So maybe its best not to bother trying.

So it doesn't work, but did it work at some previous time? I guess it's possible, meaning that the Google people might have fixed it so it doesn't turn up. But logically, it is extremely unlikely that such a search could produce such a result. Here's what probably happened: someone typed "balck people stole my car" or something similarly misspelled. Google would then dutifully display the suggested search, correcting the word to "black". Then this prankster would then delete the mispelled word and type in "white people stole my car", thus giving us the screen display in the picture above.

Of course, there are inevitably some people who will believe that the picture actually proves that Google has some racist conspiracy going on. If you are one of those people, try a Google search of "you are a dochuebag" as see what it tells you.

1 comment:

  1. Fake Google ad confuses the hell out of MIT students, who are not as smart as previously thought. The Google Jobs Prank