Beyond Autocomplete: Campaigners Call On Google For Better Bi Inclusion

googlebiFifteen thousand people signed a successful petition asking Google to offer autocompletion suggestions when a user types in the word “bisexual” – but why did Google bring in the changes so quietly? And what can they do to make amends and really show a commitment to bisexual inclusion?

A campaign challenging the search engine’s discriminatory algorithms was started way back in 2010, with campaigners suggesting that the “censoring” of the word “bisexual” but not the words “gay” and “lesbian” was to do with pornographic connotations. However, ignorant stereotypes aside, this still seems an extreme step to have taken, given that Google has the option of “whitelisting” any term so that prurient content isn’t brought up.

“We noticed this change a bit more than a year ago, but wanted to work with Google to make more change than the lifting of this ban, such as releasing a statement on lifting the ban, funding for bisexual research, giving staff a bi-specific training, or holding a bisexual awareness event,” the petition organisers (who include BiNetUSA) announced in an update this week. “We hoped to make this victory even larger and while we did get a meeting with a Google staff member, we weren’t able to accomplish the stretch goals.”



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Charlotte Dingle

Charlotte 'Lottie' Dingle is Biscuit's founding editor. When she's not running freelancing for a diverse bunch of clients ranging from Cosmo to Occupy, she enjoys teaching life drawing, discussing life/the universe/everything with her beloved (but smelly) 22-year-old cat, writing flash fiction for her MA course, getting pretentious tattoos, listening to folk music, creating surrealist art, trying to change the world and drinking red wine. Oh, and My Little Pony. Don't forget My Little Pony. Her favourite biscuits are cream crackers (do they count as biscuits?).

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