When searching for a hotel on Google Maps, the last thing most people hope to see is a swastika marking their destination on the map. Due to what appears to be a bug in Google's code, however, some internet users have found just that.
@googlemaps can you tell me why the hotels in Dublin on my Google maps has swastika signs for them 🤔 https://t.co/rPuTN6W47y— katie (@katie)1543596468.0
Twitter user Katie from Dublin, Ireland, found the error and took a screenshot so people online would believe her.
"I opened my maps and was looking for hotels in the surrounding area, when I noticed the swastikas. I thought it very strange so I took a screenshot. That's when I tweeted Google maps questioning it."
But after restarting her app, the swastika was gone!
"I've since closed the app and reopened it and it's back to normal with the bed. This is the only time I've ever noticed it."
She's not the only one to see something strange, however. Users in "West Covina, California [and] London, England," have also reported swastika sightings:
Excuse me @Google but why are your maps showing London hotels with #Swastikas on the pins?? @TheSavoyLondon… https://t.co/TbaHo8gKM9— Andy (@Andy)1543569661.0
@irishkokolily @googlemaps same https://t.co/jazLtHSnin— Jamie Gray (@Jamie Gray)1543624024.0
Playing around with Google maps today, when I tried to change the icon for my location pin, I looked at more icons… https://t.co/bhIj3UMHEg— ℳąhą Bąℓi, PhD مها بالي 🌷 (@ℳąhą Bąℓi, PhD مها بالي 🌷)1536046781.0
In the 1930s, the Nazi movement in Germany appropriated the swastika as a marker of white supremacy, but prior to that it was a widespread symbol of good fortune or divinity in several Indian and other Asian religions. It's for that reason Google maps offers the image as a possible marker for a point of interest. The company refers to it not as a "swastika," but as a "Buddhist symbol of worship."
Umm @googlemaps what point of interest is denoted by a swastika? https://t.co/6qQuUomzfZ— Andy Masur (@Andy Masur)1455678944.0
@irishkokolily @googlemaps It's a religious symbol used in many Asian religions. So it is likely on Google maps to… https://t.co/H7szfE7zM0— Sean (@Sean)1543752076.0
Twitter had some feelings about the infamous symbol being used on their maps:
@HuffPost Wth— email@example.com (@firstname.lastname@example.org)1543618188.0
Hey @Google! Hay would your offline Google maps show hotels like @HardRock @HiltonHotels and @Marriott with swasti… https://t.co/xfXtUKda3p— el david (@el david)1543890115.0
If you think you’re seeing swastikas in Google Maps, don’t panic #Twitter #socialmedia https://t.co/UCbE3yyMvF— Takyou (@Takyou)1543606563.0
Google is aware of the malfunctions in their program and told Huffpost:
"We're aware that these religious symbols are incorrectly displaying for certain hotels, and are working on a fix to restore the correct hotel icon to these places."
Google says that the reason the symbol is on its Maps service is that the image is not a swastika, but rather a “Bu… https://t.co/WSkCUflsWW— Joe Collett (@Joe Collett)1543836013.0
So if you see a swastika while getting directions to your hotel, don't panic! Just restart the app and all will be well.