Google Maps: Don’t get pregnant in Wellsville

Sometimes Google Maps just gets it wrong. It is a large and complex system where a single switched byte makes all the difference. 

For whatever reason if you do a search on Pregnancy Testing Wellsville , it wants to send you off to Amsterdam NY for your appointment, 265 miles away. While Wellsvile is rural, it is in western NY near Corning and not anywhere near Herkimer, Saratoga Springs or Cobbleskill. This quirk shows up on any search using the locale Wellsville whether you search on Tuxedos in Wellsville or Flowers. It could make for one very expensive prom date.  

Pregnancy testing Wellsville results in google

A search on the similar term, Pregnancy Testing Wellsville NY returns accurate results. What is odd is that the results screen above indicates that the listings are for Wellsville NY but none are.

In the end, I don’t suppose that Google has it in for pregnant teens any more than they hate Advertising Agencies. I do though, think that as Google Maps gets more tightly integrated into the fabric of our daily lives, it is necessary for Google to fix these sorts of quirks quickly. Unfortunately, someday an unsuspecting user, in a life threatening situation, will be searching for an emergency room or hospital and be sent in the wrong direction and to a disastrous outcome.

PS – In an unplanned, related development (as they say), Miriam Ellis reports on her disastrous medical searching experience using Google Maps while seriously ill…

Please consider leaving a comment as your input will help me (& everyone else) better understand and learn about local.
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2 thoughts on “Google Maps: Don’t get pregnant in Wellsville”

  1. I’m glad Miriam is back home.

    As google has become a de facto source of contacts and phone numbers for a wide variety of services and products it desperately needs to step up its customer service responses.

    All sorts of other businesses have a level of customer service in response to mistakes. Google refuses to install such a system, instead relying on some kind of systemic/algorythmic methodology to correct errors without any kind of effort to accept responsibility.

    Someone somewhere is going to have a catastrophe as a result of bad information provided by Google. Their current systems and a lack of a true directly responsive customer service correction mechanism are going to come back to haunt them.

  2. @Dave

    Yes, I am glad Miriam is home as well. Since you have “dropped” out of the club she is my most reliable reader and poster :). I think she deserves one of the decoder rings.

    Yes it will be an interesting day if it hasn’t already happened and we just haven’t heard about. Kind of hard to report from the other side.

    Mike

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