Google's headquarters in Silicon Valley
Google's headquarters in Silicon Valley iStock

After over 150 anti-Semitic comments were discovered on the Google Maps site for Auschwitz, Google released a statement saying it “must do better.”

An investigation by The Guardian discovered hundreds of “disturbing, anti-Semitic comments” on the page for the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp. The Nazis killed over 1.1 million people at Auschwitz between 1940 and 1945, nearly one million of them were Jews. Today, the site of the death camp is a memorial to the victims who were murdered there.

Google Maps has a review tool which lets users rate locations on its maps with one to five stars. Users are also allowed to leave written comments, under the heading “Tell us what you loved about this place.”

The museum located at the site of Auschwitz, which was created in 1947, similarly has a page on the site with the ability to leave reviews.

The investigation turns up pro-Nazi, anti-Semitic posts such as “Heil Hitler” and “It’s a shame the SS was disbanded so long ago.” These posts have been on Google’s map system for as long as years.

The newspaper’s investigation discovered that the comment, “Showers were a great experience, Anne Frankly I’m glad I came” had been there for four years and “Good place to go if you want to lose weight fast” had been there for nine years.

There were also posts praising other Nazi leaders, as well as comments mocking Anne Frank and Holocaust survivor Primo Levi.

There is a function where users can flag offensive reviews to Google labelled “flag as inappropriate.” However, more than a day after reporters flagged 153 offensive posts to Google, most were still there.

A Google spokesperson told The Guardian, “We are appalled by these reviews on our platform and are taking action to remove the content and prevent further abuse.”

Google added, “We have clear policies that prohibit offensive and fake reviews and we work around the clock to monitor Maps. In this case, we know we need to do better and are working to evaluate and improve our detection systems.

Most of the offensive comments were subsequently removed.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)