Trump Tower was briefly renamed “Dump Tower” on Google Maps sometime Saturday afternoon, but the culprits are still at large.
Trump Tower was renamed at some point this past Saturday, PIX11 reports, and Google Map users began tweeting about the change around 2 p.m. Trump International Hotel & Tower near Columbus Circle in New York City also had “Trump” switched with “Dump” to Dump International Hotel & Tower.
“Some inappropriate names were surfacing in Google Maps that should not be, and we apologize for any offense this may have caused. Our teams immediately took action and have fixed the issue,” a Google spokesperson told PIX11.
Users are able to provide contributions to the Google Maps site to help keep the map as updated as possible, but sometimes errors (or flat out intentional attacks) can occur. Think of Wikipedia and the various uproars which have occurred to “volunteer work.”
So far, Donald Trump has not commented on the name change of Trump Tower. He has more important things to tweet about, like the Wisconsin recount.
And while there is nothing yet to support this supposition, what if the Trump Tower renaming was a low-level attack by Anonymous? It is well within the realm of possibility considering their animosity towards the President-elect. The hacker coalition has repeatedly declared war on Trump, even going so far as to claim to having successfully hacked personal info on Trump and people close to him according to a March story by CNN.
“You say what your current audience wants to hear but in reality you don’t stand for anything except for greed and power,” the Anonymous member declared.
While changing the name of Trump Tower to Dump Tower would not fit with the typical methodology of Anonymous, Trump is far from the typical political figure.
More likely than not, the “Dump Tower” name change is the result of either a troll or a disgruntled voter. The timing also fits well with the major publicity over the aforementioned recounts going on in the nation.
Jill Stein of the Green Party instigated a series of recounts is several major states that went Republican, primarily Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Michigan.
The Trump Tower name change has another oddity, strangely enough, in the font choice. The New York Daily News reports “The culprit — or another conspirator — also transliterated the skyscraper’s title in Russian Cyrillic at another angle, possibly alluding to the Republican’s alleged ties to Russia during his White House campaign.”
Renaming the Trump Tower to Dump Tower in such a way indicates that if the vandalism was a troll, it was one with more of a sense of humor or irony than your typical internet specimen.
Google Map’s review process could also use a bit of boost. There have been a number of incidents involving the app where anything from harmless pranks to racist phrases have been used. One racial slur, when typed in the map bar, would take a user straight to the White House. Tech.mic has several examples.
Such is the case of nitricboy, a Google Map user (not a Google employee), who’s “art” has been showcased on the previously referenced Tech.mic.
This is simply to show the problems Google Maps faces when it comes to safeguarding and protecting map integrity, much less just the Trump Tower. Of course, Google Maps kind of had to allow the user access to the maps, as 2005 Wired article claims that “the search giants were also reacting in no small part to web hackers who had already started to reverse-engineer the two mapping services in ways neither had expected.”
All in all, it will be interesting to see what comes of the Trump Tower rename.
So what are your thoughts? Who do you think is responsible for renaming Trump Tower to Dump Tower? And why? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below!
[Featured Image by Spencer Platt/Getty Images]