Friday, January 8, 2010

WIRED nails Google on Islam censor!

[islam_is.jpg]

Google likely got a call from some of the most repressive boys on earth at OIC who told them how disappointed they were that such unflattering things came up about Islam in their search - next they probably sent Google a gift - you know in good faith !! And told those over at the Google campus - we trust you will do the right thing!! No harm done of course!


Confused about what Islam is? Join the party — it seems Google can’t figure it out either. Or, at least its search suggestion program can’t.

If you type, “Buddhism is” or “Christianity is,” Google will quickly show you suggestions for what it thinks you might be trying to type. In the former query’s case, the Google guesses “not a religion,” “wrong,” “not what you think.” Christianity gets tougher treatment with the suggestions “bullshit” and “not a religion.”

But the query “Islam is”? Not a thing comes to mind for Google to suggest. (Search results are still there, of course.)

It’s enough to get some to conclude Google is censoring itself, perhaps as a result of complaints for suggestions that one guesses are just as flattering as those for other faiths.

But Google says it’s just a software problem.

“This is a bug and we’re working to fix it as quickly as we can,” a Google spokesman told Wired.com.

The suggestion feature relies on your previous searches and searches from users globally. Google says it filters out “pornographic terms, dirty words, and hate and violence terms.”

That means it’s most likely someone at Google got a complaint, added the phrase to a list of skip words, like f**K, seeing the results as hate and violence — perhaps without even looking at suggestions for other religions.

So, “What is the ‘Islam is’” thing? We suggest “a bug,” an “affront,” “censorship,” “an attempt at international relations by a large, profit-driven advertising company,” or a “feature,” depending on your politics, religion or employer.

WIRED

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