Monday, May 26, 2008

Shame on Google's Memorial Day Silence

Throughout the year, Google dresses up its corporate logo atop its search engine page to commemorate various holidays or special events.

More Google: Holiday Logos

Since 1999, when Google first took its search engine online, it has never dressed the logo for Memorial Day.

Another Memorial Day, Another Google Yawn

That article shows that Google has an emphatic left-wing bias. [It doesn't mention that since 2004 Google has been celebrating the Iranian ("Persian") New Year.]

Here's more:

Google shows conservative women in bikinis - TECH.BLORGE.com

These are insulting photoshopped pics of popular conservative talkers like Ann Coulter and Michelle Malkin. The images do not automatically appear because of the large number of pages that Ann Coulter and Michelle Malkin have. Ayn Rand has more pages than Malkin, but no images. These Conservative columnists are clearly hated by somebody at Google, and I'm not talking about the janitor.

So why am I critical of Google for their silence on Memorial Day when my own Memorial Day posts are clearly anti-war, even going so far as to say "They Died In Vain," and that Jesus wouldn't celebrate Memorial Day?

Because Google won't come right out and admit they don't like war, and use their influence to bring peace.

Obviously Google doesn't want people remembering Memorial Day. Is it because they don't like war, or is it because they don't want the U.S. to win? Maybe they'd just rather have "the Persians" win.

Google is typical of the "mainstream media": they want to appear to be "neutral" and "objective," but they really have a left-of-center, pro-State bias. Even left-of-center anti-war activists are generally pro-State. Sometimes they're against Bush's wars, but not Clinton's wars. Many would like to see the U.S. lose.

I'd rather see the U.S. repent than be destroyed by war.

I used to assume that Google was a neutral computer-driven search engine that picked up everything on the Internet just because it was there, and I could be assured that if I didn't find it on Google, it didn't exist. Now I believe that human beings at Google spin the results to promote an ideology.


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catholicanarchy.org » Memorial Day and the religious syncretism of the state

6 comments:

Rick said...

Do they celebrate Remembrance Day? Yes, it's a huge holiday in many of (our allied) countries, maybe more important to them than Memorial Day is to us, especially if disrespectful used car commercials are any indication. Google also celebrated US Veteran's day with military helmets in the logo, but I guess that doesn't fit the story you're trying to sell.

Your rant also fails to mention that one of their earliest custom logos was of an American flag, and that they've celebrated the 4th of July every year since they started. One year, they even ran patriotic logos for four days straight. http://www.google.com/doodle2.html

And the post you link to about conservative women being objectified is beyond ridiculous.

Think about it: A guy goes to a search engine, types in the names of 2 shallow, sensationalist "girl pundits" AND an admitted homosexual Republican prostitute who got unusual access to the White House, and then finds that their racier pictures are the most popular on the web. And you're shocked by this?

If it makes you feel better, try doing an image search for liberal hotties, like Jane Fonda. See? And my guess as to why Ayn Rand doesn't have bikini pics up: there aren't any. This doesn't take a conspiracy, buddy, people just don't care about Ayn Rand enough to imagine her in a bikini. much less photoshop it.

The technology is a mirror of society. And it doesn't make sense to blame the mirror for what it reflects. Stop expecting tech companies to go in and censor their software to match each of your personal convictions.

Kevin Craig said...

Thanks for the comments, Rick. I'm not sure I understand your point, but it helps liven up my blog.

My point is that Google wants to be thought of as neutral, objective, and unbiased, but it has an anti-right, pro-left bias.

Do they celebrate Remembrance Day? Yes, it's a huge holiday in many of (our allied) countries, maybe more important to them than Memorial Day is to us, especially if disrespectful used car commercials are any indication. Google also celebrated US Veteran's day with military helmets in the logo, but I guess that doesn't fit the story you're trying to sell.

So Google "honors" the war dead of other nations, but not the U.S.

Google no-show for Veterans Day

The story I'm trying to sell is that Google is biased, as I said above, but also that the left-right bias that Google is selling is carefully constrained within the mainstream. A consistent, philosophical opposition to all wars, not just a partisan opposition to Bush's right-mainstream wars and support of Clinton's left-mainstream wars, is not behind Google's omission of Memorial Day logos.

Your rant also fails to mention that one of their earliest custom logos was of an American flag, and that they've celebrated the 4th of July every year since they started. One year, they even ran patriotic logos for four days straight. http://www.google.com/doodle2.html

Their logos avoid the real (revolutionary) meaning of the 4th of July. If Thomas Jefferson had designed a logo, it wouldn't be about Bar-B-Q's and painting. It would be a dagger through the heart of a tyrant. I'm no fan of "patriotic" celebrations of Independence Day.

And the post you link to about conservative women being objectified is beyond ridiculous.

I don't think it's "ridiculous"; I think it raises an interesting point.

Think about it: A guy goes to a search engine, types in the names of 2 shallow, sensationalist "girl pundits" AND an admitted homosexual Republican prostitute who got unusual access to the White House, and then finds that their racier pictures are the most popular on the web. And you're shocked by this?

OK, obviously you're a left-winger. I don't think Ann Coulter is "shallow," even when I disagree with her. I don't think she's any more "shallow" than Jane Fonda.

If it makes you feel better, try doing an image search for liberal hotties, like Jane Fonda. See?

What I see proves the point of the website I linked to. Why are all the images of Jane Fonda flattering and none photoshopped insults? They are real (as "real" as any Hollywood photo) and glamorous. Where are the (real) pictures of "Hanoi Jane" sitting atop a Communist howitzer?

http://www.glamorati.com/celebrity/wp-content/uploads/2008/04/jane-fonda-mugshot.jpg

But images to right-wing pundits are both faked and insulting.

And by the way, I totally disagree with Malkin's and Coulter's positions on the war.

And my guess as to why Ayn Rand doesn't have bikini pics up: there aren't any. This doesn't take a conspiracy, buddy, people just don't care about Ayn Rand enough to imagine her in a bikini. much less photoshop it.

I don't understand your hostility toward me. Why do left-wingers spend time creating quasi-erotic photoshopped pics of right-wing figures? Why does google put the insulting pics of right-wingers on top, but flattering pics of left-wingers on top? Is that completely a result of random computer results?

The technology is a mirror of society. And it doesn't make sense to blame the mirror for what it reflects. Stop expecting tech companies to go in and censor their software to match each of your personal convictions.

I never even hinted at any such expectations. My complaint isn't that they don't censor according to "my" expectations, but that they censor according to their expectations, which happen to be pro-left/anti-right and within the Empire-approved mainstream.

If Google is a mirror of anything, it would be that left-wingers spend more time on pictures than on words.

What is really on your mind, Rick? Do you support the war in Iraq? Is that why you're angry with me?

Rick said...

Their logos avoid the real (revolutionary) meaning of the 4th of July. If Thomas Jefferson had designed a logo, it wouldn't be about Bar-B-Q's and painting. It would be a dagger through the heart of a tyrant.

Do you really think a good choice for the 4th of July would be a painting of a guy getting stabbed to death on a company's logo? I'm guessing you're not a PR guy. At least, not any more.

If you really found their fun little 4th of July cartoons too shallow, why would you request that they do the same with Memorial Day?

Isn't this exactly the reason they give for not doing a Memorial Day logo?

And why are you even expecting a fun branding campaign to express important, nuanced ideas, anyway? Let me guess, search engine logos teach your kids about war, freedom and grief, and cereal boxes handle sex ed?

Did you get this mad at McDonald's for their failure to produce Plessy v. Ferguson-shaped hamburgers? An obvious anti-octoroon bias!

What is really on your mind, Rick? Do you support the war in Iraq? Is that why you're angry with me?


I'm less angry as frustrated. I find it painful that people rush to politicize something as simple as a picture of a corporate logo.

Maybe they just don't want to associate their brand with grieving? Maybe whimsical, goofy logos aren't the place to cry over war dead or remind people of controversial current events?

Why is it so unfathomable that they might be trying to show respect by telling the marketing team to hang back during funeral commemorations? And maybe they make an exception in those few countries that have a simple, well established, and non-partisan image of solidarity that is unlikely to be misunderstood or evoke unpleasant imagery?

Why does it always have to be such a conspiracy? I mean, listen to what you're saying. "Maybe they'd just rather have 'the Persians' win." How can smart people be so thoughtless?

Let me put it simply: I believe there are some things in life that are best handled outside of corporate branding campaigns. The death of a soldier is one of them. Recognize what the high road is, and stop blaming those few people with the courage to take it.

Kevin Craig said...

Quoting Rick:

Do you really think a good choice for the 4th of July would be a painting of a guy getting stabbed to death on a company's logo? I'm guessing you're not a PR guy. At least, not any more.

It's pretty obvious that PR is not my priority. I'm willing to take a stand for what I think is right regardless of the PR consequences. Obviously Google doesn't have a PR guy, or we wouldn't be having this discussion. I don't understand what PR benefits Google has won by silently boycotting Memorial Day.

If you really found their fun little 4th of July cartoons too shallow, why would you request that they do the same with Memorial Day?

I'm guessing that Google thinks itself fairly edgy by boycotting Memorial Day. They're trying to make a statement, aren't they? If not, then we have more evidence of a PR failure, with people getting angry at Google and the rest merely perplexed.

Isn't this exactly the reason they give for not doing a Memorial Day logo?

I don't recall Google giving any reasons at all for boycotting Memorial Day. That's why I accused them of being chicken.

And why are you even expecting a fun branding campaign to express important, nuanced ideas, anyway?

Aren't they trying to make some serious and important nuanced political statement by boycotting Memorial Day?

Let me guess, search engine logos teach your kids about war, freedom and grief, and cereal boxes handle sex ed?

Isn't Google trying to make a statement about war, U.S. foreign policy, or something, by boycotting Memorial Day?

I guess you're unware of Dr. Kellogg's purposes for Corn Flakes.

Did you get this mad at McDonald's for their failure to produce Plessy v. Ferguson-shaped hamburgers? An obvious anti-octoroon bias!

I have no idea what that means. My criticism of Google is that they didn't go far enough in their protest of what Memorial Day stands for.

I'm less angry as frustrated. I find it painful that people rush to politicize something as simple as a picture of a corporate logo. Maybe they just don't want to associate their brand with grieving? Maybe whimsical, goofy logos aren't the place to cry over war dead or remind people of controversial current events? Why is it so unfathomable that they might be trying to show respect by telling the marketing team to hang back during funeral commemorations?

Because, as you admitted, they honor the dead of other countries on "Remembrance Day."

And maybe they make an exception in those few countries that have a simple, well established, and non-partisan image of solidarity that is unlikely to be misunderstood or evoke unpleasant imagery?

Memorial Day is "partisan?" Memorial Day honors only those who died in a Republican-initiated war? What could be "misunderstood" or "unpleasant" about the suggested Google logo on this page? How is Google's logo for Remembrance Day any less unpleasant? It specifically images a poem which is every bit as unpleasant as Memorial Day.

Why does it always have to be such a conspiracy? I mean, listen to what you're saying. "Maybe they'd just rather have 'the Persians' win." How can smart people be so thoughtless?

It seems obvious to me that a lot of thought has gone into this issue.

Let me put it simply: I believe there are some things in life that are best handled outside of corporate branding campaigns. The death of a soldier is one of them. Recognize what the high road is, and stop blaming those few people with the courage to take it.

Obviously Google disagrees with you, since it handles the death of soldiers from other countries. Why is it "the high road" to ignore the deaths of American soldiers, or, while opposing the honoring of American soldiers, lacking the guts to come forward and say so?

rick said...

I think it's unwise for a company to associate its logo with tragedies, that Memorial and Poppy days evoke different emotions, and that people are too quick to assign malice. With that, I've said my piece.

Thank you for posting my comments and responding to them, Kevin. May you have a good week.

Kevin Craig said...

Thanks for the comments, Rick. And you're welcome to call in to my "Ozarks Virtual Town Hall" every Saturday morning at 10:30 am Central Time:

townhall.KevinCraig.us