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Google search shows Kannada ‘ugliest language in India’, portal apologises after outrage

“Kannada has a history of its own, having come into existence as many as 2,500 years ago. The language has been the pride of Kannadigas through the ages,” state minister Aravind Limbavali said.

By: Express Web Desk | Bengaluru |
Updated: June 3, 2021 11:58:46 pm
google kannadiga ugliest language, ugliest language in india, google apology kannada, Aravind Limbavali, bangalore news, indian expressGoogle said the search result was 'not reflective of its opinions'. (File)

Kannadigas were outraged Thursday after a Google query on the “ugliest language in India” returned Kannada as the answer. After an uproar and the Karnataka government saying it would issue a legal notice to Google, the engine apologised and removed the search result.

Karnataka Minister for Kannada, Culture and Forest Aravind Limbavali said, “I have instructed officials to send a legal notice to Google for showing such an answer to that kind of a question. Kannada language has a history of its own, having come into existence as many as 2,500 years ago. The language has been the pride of Kannadigas through the ages.”

Later, he took to Twitter to demand an apology from Google to Kannada and Kannadigas. “If Kannada is now called ugliest language in India, it is merely an attempt by Google to insult this pride of Kannadigas. Demand apology from Google ASAP to Kannada, Kannadigas. Legal action will be taken against Google for maligning the image of our beautiful language!” he tweeted.

In a response to the incident, Google said the search result was “not reflective of the opinions of Google”.

“Search isn’t always perfect. Sometimes, the way content is described on the internet can yield surprising results to specific queries. We know this is not ideal, but we take swift corrective action when we are made aware of an issue and are continually working to improve our algorithms. Naturally, these are not reflective of the opinions of Google, and we apologise for the misunderstanding and hurting any sentiments,” its statement said.

Apart from the state minister, former chief minister HD Kumaraswamy had also expressed outrage over the incident. In a series of tweets, he sought to know why Google “behaves in an irresponsible manner” in terms of language.

Others, including the BJP’s Bengaluru Central MP P C Mohan, slammed Google and asked it to apologise. Sharing the screenshot of the search on his Twitter handle, Mohan said Karnataka is home to the great Vijayanagara empire and the Kannada language has a rich heritage, a glorious legacy and a unique culture.

“One of the worlds oldest languages, Kannada had great scholars who wrote epics much before Geoffrey Chaucer was born in the 14th century. Apologise @GoogleIndia.” Mohan tweeted.

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