[lg policy] Russia Decries Google's Use Of Ukrainian Spellings For Crimean Places

Fierman, William wfierman at indiana.edu
Thu Jul 28 22:55:05 EDT 2016


Russia Decries Google's Use Of Ukrainian Spellings For Crimean Places
http://www.rferl.org/content/russia-decries-google-use-ukrainian-spellings-crimean-places-streets-google-map/27887490.html
July 29, 2016

U.S. tech giant Google came under fire in Russia for using Ukraine's "decommunized" spellings for street names in parts of Crimea, which Moscow annexed illegally from Ukraine in 2014.

Google Maps has adopted Ukrainian versions of some 900 place names in Crimea in line with a "decommunization" law Kyiv passed last year.

"I think it's a short-sighted policy," Russian Minister of Communications Nikolai Nikiforov told Rossiya 24 television on July 28, adding he hopes "the mistake is corrected."

"If Google pays so little attention to Russian law and the names of Russian localities then it will not be able to do business effectively on Russian territory," Nikiforov warned.

Sergei Aksyonov, the head of Crimea's Russia-controlled government, accused Google Maps of producing a "propaganda product rather than real maps" by using Ukrainian transliterations for the area.

A Russian spokesman for Google said the firm was working on ensuring that the Russian version of the localities would be incorporated into the Russian-language version of Google Maps.

"We are actively working on giving [localities] their old names in the Russian version of Google Maps," the spokesman told Ukrainian financial daily RBK.
Based on reporting by AFP and Interfax
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