I have been meaning to write about this a couple of days ago, but had no time to finish the post. And just today, I come across the news article from TOI that talks about this. Google has been running into a lot of controversey for what it maps and what it does not. On the one hand, all US military installations are grayed out while Indian installations are not. Why so ?? And now it starts playing God, by deciding that Pakistan Occupied Kashmir is part of Pakistan. Deciding what part of the earth belongs to which country is not google’s business. And as much as I love using google earth for work and pleasure, I cannot accept this stance.
I urge everyone to protest to Google by calling up their tel no. below during business hours.
Google Inc. 1600 Amphitheatre Parkway Mountain View CA 94043 phone: (650) 253-0000 fax: (650) 253-0001
Here is the text of the article, followed by screen shots from Google Earth.
TOI….New Delhi: While the threat that Google Earth apparently poses to national security has been grabbing headlines, there’s another potential controversy that’s been overlooked.
If you open the political map of the subcontinent in Google Earth, you’d find that there’s a well-defined boundary between India and Pakistan, and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) is on Pakistan’s side. Further, Aksai Chin isn’t a part of either India or China; it is a separate political entity.
It would be interesting to see how the issue is dealt with, considering that no printed matter in India can be distributed if it contains a map of the country that does not conform to the official one.
While this might sound like an over-reaction to a programme that’s available on the Net, there was a recent row between Taiwan and Google Earth over Taiwan being referred to as a “Province of China”. As Taiwan complained, Google Earth decided to show it as a separate country, and China has now protested.
nterestingly, China seems to have accepted Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh being shown as part of India.
Why is Google Earth so important? Google isn’t a way of life in India yet — India’s internet reach is a little over 2% of the population — but they aim to “organise the world’s information.”
With the world getting increasingly wired to the internet and with plans like putting entire libraries on the Net, Google might soon be the world’s foremost repository of information. With possibilities like that, governments want to make sure that they get facts about their countries ‘straight.’
Click on these thumbnails for full res images.