Google Steps on Map Maker Edits After Android Urination Incident

In case you missed it, a cyber graffiti artist recently daubed an image of an urinating Android on Google Maps. If you did miss it, you missed your chance, as Google is making sure that no one takes such a shot again and is prohibiting the editing of Maps.

This is why we can’t have nice things. Google is really quite upset about the incident, and said that the company took action as soon as the image was brought to its attention.

Google then considered what further action to take and has now taken that action. In short, you are likely to see another Android going to the toilet on an Apple logo.

“As some of you know already, we have been experiencing escalated attacks to spam Google Maps over the past few months,” said a post on the Map Maker product forum.

“The most recent incident was particularly troubling and unfortunate. A strong user in our community chose to go and create a large scale prank on the Map.

“As a consequence, we suspended auto-approval and user moderation across the globe till we figured out ways to add more intelligent mechanisms to prevent such incidents. All of our edits are currently going through a manual review process.”


Belgium celebrates a similar image, in the form of the Manneken Pis, but Google definitely does not, and it is making sure that it will never be exposed, or see its users exposed, to such vulgar characterisation.

Manually checking edits for images of pissing robots takes time, and Google does not have the time to do it.

To be fair to everyone, because not everyone will be doodling toilet-wall like imagery onto Maps, Google is just going to stop anyone making an edit.

This will save time hunting for drawn dinkles and save proper users from wasting their time making edits that Google might not get around to seeing for a long time anyway.

It’s a temporary thing that Google has put in place until it works out how to handle the digital tackle issue.

“Given the current state of the system, we have come to the conclusion that it is not fair to any of our users to let them continue to spend time editing,” the firm added.

“Every edit you make is essentially going to a backlog that is growing very fast. We believe that it is more fair to only say that if we do not have the capacity to review edits at roughly the rate they come in, we have to take a pause.

“We have hence decided to temporarily disable editing across all countries starting Tuesday May 12 2015, till we have our moderation system back in action. This will be a temporary situation and one that we hope to come out of as soon as possible.”

This article was originally published on the Inquirer.

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