Google Maps Removes Palestine In Favor Of Israel

Zachary Volkert

UPDATE: Google Maps was accused of inserting itself into the protracted conflict between Israel and Palestine when the latter territory "disappeared" from the digital atlas, but the company now says that nothing changed on their map at all. Read the full updated story here.

I thought it was just rumours. But it's true; no more Palestine on the google map

— شا (@_shrmla) August 6, 2016

"[This] is part of the Israeli scheme to establish its name as a legitimate state for generations to come and abolish Palestine once and for all. The move is also designed to falsify history, geography as well as the Palestinian people's right to their homeland, and a failed attempt to tamper with the memory of Palestinians and Arabs as well as the world."

— anne from accounting (@dearmrchrist) August 6, 2016

"The omission of Palestine is a grievous insult to the people of Palestine and undermines the efforts of the millions of people who are involved in the campaign to secure Palestinian independence and freedom from Israeli occupation and oppression. This is an important issue, as Google Maps are now regarded as definitive by people around the world, including journalists, students and others carrying out research into the Israel-Palestine situation."

— Hassan. (@Larbiva) July 30, 2016

"Over the past decade, Google Earth and Google Maps have become the online cartographic resources of reference. But popularity does not bestow authority.... Yet by virtue of its ubiquity, Google is often the arbiter of first recourse for borders and toponyms. So where Google's maps show borders or place names that deviate from official usage or stray into international disputes, they may cause confusion, offense or worse."

Because of potential for unintended consequences, Google Maps has been known to tailor its product to the country that it's being viewed in, although it's not certain if this is the case with Palestine. Sometimes those choices are based on local law, which may officially restrict such depictions, such as India and Pakistan's contentious Kashmir region.

— News18 (@CNNnews18) December 14, 2014

"Google Maps makes every effort to depict disputed regions and features objectively... Where we have local versions, we follow local regulations for naming and borders."

[Image via danielo/Shuttershock]