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back to article Google suggests Islam is nothing

Google's search Suggest function treats Islam a bit differently from the other major religions of the world. It's willing to suggest "Christianity is bullshit" or "Judaism is false," but if you begin to ask what Islam is, it won't suggest a thing. Google says that this search oddity is a bug - and that its search gurus are …

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Anonymous Coward

Islam must be

What about the fact that maybe people don't use the "Islam is" phrase as much as they do with other religions - unlikely but could happen.

Anyway you can use "Islam must be", "Islam should", and "Islam in" instead.

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nope

"What about the fact that maybe people don't use the "Islam is" phrase as much as they do with other religions - unlikely but could happen."

That is rather well squashed by the fact that Yahoo! does offer the offensive "Allah is" suggestions... (see my post further down)

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Yahoo v Google

They both give me the same suggestions for "allah is"

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.co.uk

Oddly if you put in 'christianity is', then replace the christianity with islam you then get one suggestion:

'islamabad is the capital of what country'

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Pathetic

This makes me furious and I doubt I'm the only one. I don't want a religious debate here but as far as I'm concerned islam is always the faith everyone's scared to offend, because they make such a bloody fuss every time someone 'offends' them (usually they just burn flags).

This clearly isn't a bug, what the hell kind of bug would do that. Google needs to man-up, they're pathetic.

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Big Brother

Re: Pathetic

"islam is always the faith everyone's scared to offend, because they make such a bloody fuss every time someone 'offends' them"

Not really. Some Muslims make a very big fuss this is true, but it's by no means "they" en masse. Usually it's just a few very angry and very vocal people. The interesting thing is how so few people manage to get so much media attention...

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but of course

I guess when your prophet as a middle age man had a 9yo bride (Aisha) and made his living as a caravan raider people can be a bit sensitive to criticism. yeah 13th century society ftw!!!

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Go

The Squeeky Wheel ...

...gets the grease. And in the case of today's media generates the most revenue.

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is.* is

My initial thought were that the problem might be to do with the first letters of both words being common, which would be a rather strange bug in the way they link words. Yhe problem exists with "Israel is", although 'isabel is' contradicts this hypothesis.

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Boffin

No bug

Clearly this is not a bug. The bigger question is whether anything will be done to prevent coders from implementing this kind of thing in the future?

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Black Helicopters

Strange "bug"

Not only "Islam"...

When you type, say, "Allah is" in Yahoo! you get suggestions like "Allah is Satan", "Allah is not", etc (along with "Allah is great" and the ever-trendy "allah is in the house"). When you type "god is" you get sensibly the same stuff.

On Google, "God is" will give you roughly the same suggestions, while "Allah is" gives you... nothing.

Stangely enough, "Koran is" (and "Quran is") and "Bible is" return roughly the same results (including "is bullshit" and the such) on both search engines. Did the Google "bug" forget to censor a few potentially sensitive suggestions? ("Qur'an is" doesn't yield a terribly high number of suggestions, and none negative, but I guess that this spelling is not often used by infidels.)

Interestingly, "Jehovah is" returns one negative suggestion with Yahoo (along with a lot of positive ones) while Google's suggestion for the same are all positive.

(The conspiracy theorist amongst you will note that "Jehova 9" triggers the obvious "Jehova 9 11" in Yahoo, but yelds nothing in Google...)

Black copter, obviously

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Thumb Up

jesus is my homeboy

scientology is bullshit.

michael jackson is alive

google is skynet

...

'theregister is' nothing unfortunately

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WTF?

They also return nothing for "I hate"

Not really sure where Google is going with this. As was pointed out on a bit on The Graham Norton Show recently, phrases like "is it wrong" or "why does" can come up with some rather odd suggestions.

I can understand that they don't want to see news articles about someone horribly offended by getting certain suggestions. But that's impossible. The only sane solution will probably be to make the suggestion feature off by default, and you can turn it on if you want.

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PS

Similarly, Yahoo has one suggestion for "Allah 91" (adds a 1, obviously) while Google returns nothing.

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Islam is obviously...

...the one true faith, alah must be blocking the query. All those other religions should take note and convert 'cause their gods obviously can't hack it in the 21st century. Certainly beats those melted cheese depictions of jesus and the holy virgin that that other monotheistic flavour of abrahamic-derived god-botherers touts as a miracle.

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Anonymous Coward

Engineers have no control?

I wouldn't visit the google site with a full-body condom, but if you visit

https://ssl.scroogle.org/

and search for "Microsoft is", the first result back tells you that "Microsoft is DEAD". OoohEeerr.

P.S. Search seems to work with or without quotes.

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Alert

Don't Worry...

There's always "mohammed is a". They haven't sanitized that (yet):

"mohammed is a" ...

"false prophet"

"liar"

"pig"

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Grenade

My favourite

israel is ... a terrorist state :D

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FAIL

is* is

It happens with quite a few "is* is" queries; I've tried ten and got about half of them with no suggestions. It seems to happen with NAMES which begin with "is"... Isometric didn't do it but Isere did.

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FAIL

Not quite

Sorry to disappoint you conspiracy theorists, but as a Muslim, I can assure you that if we were to actually get upset over something so silly, it would be for "Muhammad is" or "Allah is" rather than "Islam is". Those two would be much more offensive, and both of them work just fine. You even get warm fuzzy phrases like "Allah is satan" and "Muhammad is a false prophet".

It probably is a bug, just not a very important one.

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Anonymous Coward

But bear in mind

That if it IS being done not to offend, then like all the other pc crap, it is not what offends you that counts, it is what the person choosing to think they can be offended on your behalf might think you'd be offended about.

They are too busy being offended on your behalf to actually listen to or understand what your opinion or beliefs might be, or what might really give you offence or alternatively a good chuckle.

I have yet to hear from anyone who is ACTUALLY offended by these things, it is always some self important git who thinks someone else will be offended by it, and "somethig must be done" about it.

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Re:not quite...?

Well. I tried "Allah is" and a few others, (including "Allah is" , "Allah 91" , and also some jewish-related searches) and they some appear to be censored. Now I'm sure that real muslims wouldn't be offended by suggestions made by a search engine. Really. Actually Islam has always been a very tolerant and adaptative religion historically (much more so than judaism or christianism, for example). But the fact is, when you try a couple Islam-related searches on Google the suggestions are obviously censored (as compared to what you get with Yahoo, for example). Noone blames muslims, it's entirely a Google-related issue.

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Boffin

Not a bug

It's not a bug, because the same things happen if you try and type in "muslims are..."

I'm guessing a technician has removed these particular indexes to avoid offending Muslims. Fair enough - they're not actually censoring anything, it will still let you search for these phrases.

It would be a bit more equal, though, if they extended this to other major religions. But now the fact is uncovered... they can't win.

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Try "are muslims" instead

The first to suggestions are "circumcised" and "terrorists".

Maybe this just shows that people searching the words "muslim" and "islam" are more likely to enter a question than a statement.

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Black Helicopters

Google loop. I am...

Taking the first suggestion from google I have...

I am... 'i am bored'

bored is ... 'bored is a state of mind

mind is ... 'mind is the magic'

magic is ... 'magic is building'

building is ... 'building is my strong suit'

suit is ... 'suit is too big'

big is ... 'big is beautiful'

beautiful is ... 'beautiful is good'

good is ... 'good is the enemy of great'

enemy is ... 'enemy is us'

us is ... 'us is bankrupt'

bankrupt is ... 'bankruptcy is good'

Repeat forever!! ... Good is the enemy of great. Enemy is the US. US is bankrupt. Bankrupty is good ....

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The Young Ones answered this in the 80s

Neil: NO! no! Don't make fun of the Arabs, we'll get into terrible trouble!

Scene: some mid-eastern palace

Grand Vizier: British ambassador is here to apologise for unfavourable comments in British press

Sheik, Sultan, whatever: I will see him now.

Grand Vizier: Which bit of him would you like to see first?

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This post has been deleted by its author

Easy to undetand

If google suggest any thing. It will be the target of mulsims all over the world.

All religion have been savage and bloodthirsty in the past, but only ONE still trash whole countries over cartoons and news.

Islam is the whorst thing to ever happen to human kind

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FAIL

We're all equal

Islam is not the worst thing to ever happen to humanity. They just have the misfortune of doing their period of assertion in a time when the world is covered with reporters and dozens of 24 hour news channels all eagerly awaiting scenes of carnage; amidst a populace that once would have smacked you across the face if you dared to say something contrary to the established opinion (i.e. what the bishop/king/lord says). We're ready to film everything and too scared to offend our own shadows.

I know little about Judaism so I won't comment. As for Christianity... do you think the Crusades were warm and fuzzy? Those guys carried swords for a reason. How about the so-called witch hunts? Some people *still* fear witches, despite the most compelling evidence being that witches are either old crones who are bitter about everything, or cute young lesbians that go "ooooh" at flowers, none of which involves, you know, actual witchcraft. Speaking of lesbians, and the male equivalent, the church has a few things to say about that lifestyle choice. And it is horribly mysoginistic. Some Catholic churches seem to take a degree of pride in the "accuracy" of the depictions of Jesus nailed to the cross. I remember many years ago where the blood was drawn basically spewing out of somewhere around his torso and pouring down the cross. I'm surprised it wasn't dripping.

Islam's fault is it is doing all this nonsense now.

The Christians have already done the whole brutal domination thing. And, being the keepers of our history, they tend to have a slightly softer retelling of it than was probably true. Convenient.

Whether Islam is right or wrong is not for me to say. For every point is a counterpoint. There's bad stuff (from a Western perspective) in Islamic culture, but our own culture isn't exactly rosy either.

To accuse Islam of being the worst thing ever to happen to humankind is unacceptable.

[no conflict of interest: agnostic after poor attempt at CofE indoctrination at school...]

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Anonymous Coward

Islam is not any...

worse than Christianity, but the timing of this Islamic crusade coincides with the ability to kill people far more easily than ever before. This gives terrorist/religious states an unfair advantage in that they can feel relatively free to condone or at least not strongly condemn terrorist actions. They rely upon the morality of the states that they are causing harm too to not bomb them into oblivion as the collateral damage would be horrific.

Interesting how their continued existence relies upon the superior morality of those they are targeting.

Dark ages religious ideology at work in an age of global communications, global paranoia, global environmental change, and the easy possibility of mutual assured destruction by our own hands equals bad timing.

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Re: Islam is the worst thing etc...

Hmm... and you can quantify that? Religion is a phase that we appear to be growing out of, we'd get there a lot quicker if we ignored all flavours of bigotted bleating from those who struggle with the distinction between fictional literature and reality. They're all the same, particularly the monotheistic ones.

You could argue that islam is following a similar trajectory to christianity but is approx 500 yrs younger (and has a distributed rather than centralised leadership). Now, what were christians doing around 500 years ago?

It suits the powers that be to have everyone scared of an external threat, especially if it allows them to justify war.

Quantify the threat posed by terrorists of any flavour and compare it to the threat posed by cars, swimming pools or myriad other trappings of modern life. It's miniscule.

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Grenade

try Allah is

They slipped up with that one....

Allah is satan... made me laugh.. one persons horseshit is another persons evil horseshit

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Try Mohammed is .. and Allah is ...

Mohammed -- silence

Allah is -- lots, starting with "Allah is great", "Allah is great in arabic", and "Allah is satan".

So yes, it is intentional code and yes, it has bugs in it.

G.

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Black Helicopters

Not just Islam...

"El Reg is" and "The Register Is" are both suspiciously blank...

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Happy

Islam is

Islam is another way of praising God

Islam is insane

>islam is always the faith everyone's scared to offend< 'MKEI'

Islam is as stupid as every other religion out there except for the Tao

(wow, just found this from Google after searching the above quote:

>Islam means Peace .. and there is no-where written in Quraan to kill non-muslims , in fact it is written in Quraan " If you kill one person , it means you have killed whole humanity ".<)

So, in the end, Islam is just another facet showing off the diversity (fractally schizophrenic nature) of WoMan kind - or, as Spock so eloquently put it, 'infinite diversity in infinite combinations.'

Cache that up your jacksi Google.

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Grenade

It's just safer this way...

Imagine if the first suggestion that came up was "Islam is bullshit' as it does for "Christianity is bullshit". Fatwah time against Google. I'm sure it's intentional.

A hand grenade for when Google unblocks the suggestions.

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WTF?

Huh?

It can quite easily be a bug. No one here knows exactly how the suggestion system works so none of us can comment on what type of bug it is, but there are several plausible reasons for it.

I would wait a month or so before expecting it to be fixed.

Google may have fixed it already, but they dont exactly make updates live immediately.

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metaphysics

It depends on what you mean by 'is'.

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Flame

Um

New World Order.

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Headmaster

Minor quibble...

...very minor.

But "Christianity is not a religion" is actually not an example of a "less favorable light". That line is usually followed by "It's a personal relationship with Jesus!". Admittedly most people wouldn't know that unless they went ahead and did the search.

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@ mkei

cry us a river and make sure it is long and deep.

write about your issues in your personal diary and keep is away from people's reach for your own good.

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Big Brother

One Reason

Is that google don't want a fatwah to be issued against them.

"can jews eat pork" replace jews with the obvious and you could possibly be considered as insulting every follows of islam in the world.

Strange though, I know of both jews & muslims who eat pork.

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Black Helicopters

It's simply a timeout

forwarding the query from teh google to the U.S. gov't servers for proper tracking and suggestions. It's taking so long to fix because the order to fix it has to filter its way through eleventeen layers of bureaucracy there. Obviously anyone searching for anything related to Islam is a scary brown and/or otherwise swarthy and untrustworthy person and must be tracked properly, right? </snark>

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Anonymous Coward

tracked properly

And extradited.

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It's an abortion

After all, "abortion is"... what, no suggestions? It seems the giant has paranoia. Free as in "free speech"? I don't think so.

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seems to censor suggestions for other things as well

It seems to censor suggestion for most ethnicities and nationalities ...

You try "mexicans are ... " or "french are" or "christians are" and I get not suggestions.

But they are more than happy to suggest "dogs are better than cats".

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Gates Halo

Even google...

Even 'Google is'... as a search term seems to be filtered. There is no autosuggest for the term 'Google is crap' but if you search for it there are plenty of sites for the term :)

http://www.theregister.co.uk/Design/graphics/icons/comment/gates_halo_32.png

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Happy

titular thingy

Nah mate, "google is" comes up with stuff.

It seems to be randomised though, as it showed "Google is great" on one try, and the next try it wasn't there.

Interestingly, "google is crap" appeared both times of trying....

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WTF?

Faceless engineers?

No wonder they take so long to find the fucking bugs!

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Black Helicopters

"The Register is"...

Hmm. Apparently El Reg has Mountainview stumped, as well. Clearly some sort of conspiracy here.

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