Google search screenshot showing gay and cunt are conflated

Google search thinks ‘gay’ is a swear word: conflates ‘cunt’ with ‘gay’ and ‘shit’

An anonymous friend of mine just alerted me to the following:

When your Google search includes the words ‘…is a cunt’, the results highlight in bold words which match the search terms. So, ‘cunt’ is highlighted. But, so is ‘shit’, and shockingly, ‘gay’ (see above).

I’ve got nothing against Monocle Magazine by the way, so don’t ask me why my friend was Googling this. But that’s not the point. The point is that Google is bringing up results about gay people when people are searching for cunts.

Personally I wouldn’t use cunt as an insult because I have one and it’s great. But whether you’re using it as an insult or to describe your vagina/vulva, either way it shouldn’t be considered an equivalent term to ‘gay’. If Google is considering ‘gay’ being used as an insult, which I don’t think it should, it should at least figure out how to separate its usage to describe a person’s sexuality vs being used offensively. If it can’t do that, it shouldn’t conflate it with swear words at all. Otherwise, people searching for offensive words then bring up articles about gay people.

There’s not much more to say about this other than obviously Google is perpetuating the concept of the word ‘gay’ as an insult or as something offensive.

However, is all of this due to automated learning algorithms based on what people search for? So it’s kind of evolved and merely reflects how people really use these words? SEO friends, can I have your input please?

 

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