Compendium of Banned Words in Google Places – Terms Not Allowed By The Nanny Bot

Google Places has a word filter in place that prevents the use of certain terms and phrases in a listing. It is a particularly “nasty” filter as it doesn’t allow the record to be verified and offers no way of working around the ban other than removing the “offending” word. Even hospitals get swept up in its reach. If you are a Sex Therapist (XXX Therapist?) it becomes kind of awkward but what are you supposed to do if you live on Pine Street or your last name is Martini?

Begging in the forums in the hopes that a Googler will lift the flag is the only way to have this particular penalty removed . I, in a fit of ecentricty, started catologing these banned words. Now in an effort to provide the transparency that Google lacks I am sharing my secret list of naughty words with the world.

In September, Danny Sullivan wrote a post on the The Five Words You Can Never Suggest On Google Instant. Places, not happy with 5 is going for broke… here is my list of 25 31 37 55 banned Places words from the past 4 or 5 months that I have cataloged. I am sure that there are many, many more, so feel free to add to the list:

Adolf (you remember, that pesky fellow Adolf…also a very common German street name)

Ari

Badak

Bang as in Bang Software

Beer

Bite

Brandy

Brothel

Cocktail

Cocks

Conne

Cummer (as in the Village of Cummer)

Cu

Dicks

Dodo

Doggy Style

Domination

Erection

Erotic

Fan as in Fan Base

Fanny as in Fanny St, Cardiff

Fantasy as in China’s Food and Fantasy

Fountain as in Fountain Civil Engineering

Fumo

Gaga

Gamma

Google

Hardcore

Hash

Konak (Konak?)

Librium

Live Chat

Locksmith

Lock

Mace

Magnum

Martini

Mob

Nique

Penetration

Pikk (apparently refers to the male genitalia in Norwegian but is a common street name in Estonia… who knew?)

Pix

Pill as in the Village of Pill

Pine (What don’t I know about the word Pine?)

Piranha

P.O. Box

Popi

Potency

Prescription

Prick as in Prick U Body Works

Sex as in Sex Therapy

Raja

Rimmer

Snag

Strippers

Tai

TCP

Venus as in Venus Hotel

Any use of 4 or more capital letters in a row

The other day I received this email from a German TC in the Places forum that demonstrates that Google has scaled this “solution” worldwide with equally odd results:

In German the verb “to tickle” (kitzeln) which is a very normal and “good” verb as well in German as in English I’m  believing so.

In German a person who is tickling an other person is a “Kitzler”. Unfortunately in some parts of Germany & Austria there are many family names like ”Kitzler”.

Now the joke:

Google’s translating systems knows ”Kitzler” obviously only as “clitoris” – banning therefore the German word ”Kitzler” from GooglePlace entries. Therefore a Austrian vinary “Hans Kitzler” can’t get onto GoogleMaps. Here his thread at our forum

Best

Helmut

I wonder if they ban the word beer in Germany? That would be reason for an international conflagration, no?

Definition Update: This just in from @sammurray: I just found out but I wish I never. My poor eyes. This should come with a warning alert :0) http://bit.ly/geZnOO

Please consider leaving a comment as your input will help me (& everyone else) better understand and learn about local.
Compendium of Banned Words in Google Places - Terms Not Allowed By The Nanny Bot by

57 thoughts on “Compendium of Banned Words in Google Places – Terms Not Allowed By The Nanny Bot”

  1. Great stuff, thanks Mike.

    I was having an up and down stat dilemma with one of my clients and I think it is because of the word “Beer”, I’ll keep you posted, thanks again.

    –Dennis

  2. It does seem that mention of any alcoholic beverage is ver boten… I assume that it applies to non alcoholic and 3.2 beer as well….

  3. @Mike – That’s fair – I can definitely see how they wouldn’t let that one fly (it’s very close in spelling to the English translation). Mind you, I mean “fair” in the context of something they would want to flag and hold for approval, not outright ban for even legitimate purpose.

  4. @Justing
    Yes IF they had a mechanism for flagging and holding for approval… these result in being unable to get to the verification or pending state. There is NO mechanism to deal with them in a rational way like you suggest.

  5. @Shawn

    I had seen the domination and erection (scaffolding erection) but couldn’t find the links to them… I had not seen Teeny, Eros or Joints …

    Thanks!

  6. Pine? What on Earth? So much for fence builders, woodshops, furniture makers et al. Would very much like to be enlightened by Google regarding that one.

  7. RE: “Pine” it could be that the proper Latin name for Pine being “Pinus” is just a little too close to something else for the Nanny Bot to tolerate… Just a thought. :)

  8. “Mauser” (ok – there is a weapon) but even if Mauser is part of a streetname in Germany (Wilhelm-Mauser-Str. 50827 Köln) GooglePlace doesn’t accept it.

    “Schlüsseldienst” (same meaning as Locksmith)
    “Fick” (same meaning as fuck – however “Fick” is a German family name being not much rare)

    I consider this compendium very useful & will hint the German (and if applicable the Spanish help forum too) on it.

  9. just a supplement:
    I as TC in the English, Spanish and German help forum informed the German GoogleGuides already about the terms
    Mauser, Fick, Kitzler and Schlüsseldienst
    And I will continue to do this for any new words if there is a concrete GooglePlace entry – provided by screenshots – posted in the according help forum thread showing the banned words.

  10. I checked “beer” as well as “Bier” on my active entry “domain”:
    Neither “domain beer” nor “domain Bier” leads to any problems in my end

  11. @ehg

    The reference is ‘A container for the thing contained’ James Thurbers English Teacher

    There is a reference to this Blog and a thanks to Mike.

    Things that go round come round. Spirit of Xmas present.

    Also the first post Places and Maps users should read before making a post to save us all time. No one has suggested and update since the first stable version.

    Cheers. Andrew.

  12. we have in Germany a doctor in “Ludwigshafen am Rhein”.
    His family name is “Wanger”.
    You probably already suspect it:
    an entry Dr Wanger gets rejected with a message ‘the word “Wanger” is not allowed’

  13. There is in Zagreb (Croatia) a Hotel of the Chain ‘ARCOTEL’ called ‘Allegra’.
    GooglePlace refused this word ‘Allegra’ as not permitted.
    One of the German contributors figured out in http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allegra
    There are plenty meanings of “Allegra”. One of them says Allegra is a drug.
    Otherwise I wonder what female people can do having ‘Allegra’ as their names?
    Seems they never can get a Place entry.

  14. Some of these words are nasty… but in French. I guess it’s the reason they’re not allowed?

    “Bite” is a quite dirty and very commonly used word for “penis”;
    “Nique” is a conjugated form of the verb “Niquer” which means “to have sex” (well, it means “to f**k” actually);
    “Pine”: this one is quite funny, because it’s an old word/verb that I don’t hear often. It’s vulgar indeed, but also quite childish. So: as a verb, “Piner” means “to f**k”. As a noun, “une pine” is a penis. That said, I really enjoyed Tyler Robertson’s explanation of this one! :D

  15. Freudenhaus is also not allowed (it’s a pretty old and more literary word & means in German almost the same as a brothel but it sounds much more nice as brothel (brothel is translated into German as “Bordell”)
    You can presumable compare the pair “Freudenhaus / Bordell” with Ben’s pair of words “to have sex (or to get [paid] love) / to f**k”
    But very strange: GooglePace offers in its German list of main categories the German word Bordell though…

  16. Google is kidding a German user rejecting the word “kiddy”.
    This is ridiculous for an owner of a shop selling toys for kids.

  17. @Ant Blair
    I have been adding words on a regular basis so the words are as up to date as I am… there may have been some that I missed but otherwise it is relatively current.

  18. in Germany we have a worldwide known first name “Adolf”.
    Unfortunately the Nazi-Dictator Hitler wasn’t the only German person with first name “Adolf”
    More: sometimes people have family names “Adolf” .

    So it happens there is a street in Germany called “Hans-Adolf-Weg”.
    Its very badly for businesses in that street.
    They get the message “Adolf” isn’t permitted and the entry not activated.

  19. A German User gave today the proof the word “Pix” is a triggered word – triggering an entry for pending.
    Regardless “Pix” is part of the entry name or just part of the email or website.
    His entry was a long time “pending” – then after I recommended to remove “pix” completly from his PlaceAccount it was set to “Active” immediately.

  20. “Hacker” is a triggered word.
    A German Vinary got pending for three month – removing only this single word “Hacker” returned the entry immendiately to “Active”

  21. Spic is also not allowed (as slur for Hispanic), allthough there are a lot of cleaning companies in our region named “spic & span” after the brand of cleaning products.

  22. a Russian user got banned the word “cul” (part of his website though)
    Note in Russian “cul” means nothing bad as it is apparently in English

  23. “cul” is used in the Russian like “cool” and for a website of a company dealing with “air conditioners”

  24. @EHG

    Ah its those darn Frenchmen that have given the word a bad name. The Dutch didn’t help either. Its interesting that the Russians are punished for a word that is not bad in their language.

    I wonder does the word “cul” trigger the flag when entered on an American or German place page?

  25. I tried it in a German sample Place entry – it got it accepted and it will displayed as part of a certain URL of one of my sample entries since about two days.

  26. “Anime” (see en.wikipedia.org for ‘Anime’ and /or ‘Manga”) is a triggered word If it is part of a GooglePlace entry the entry gets immediatety “pending”.

    This happens at least for any German place entry (I have tried it with one of my testing entries too – getting it immediatety “pending” and re-activated after removing the word “Anime”).
    No idea what the GoogleGods consider bad on “Anime”.

    Strange enough:

    I manage in my same account an entry for a real business in Belgium.

    using “Anime” in that Belgian entry nothings happens. The entry still remains active!!!

    Compare this behavior with other “country-specific” handling of triggered words:
    ‘cul’ & ‘baton’ only for Ukrainian entries and now ‘anime’ for German entries.

    Googles doing on triggered word is very weird.

  27. the word “Messer” (German word for “knife”) is triggered for “pending” – again:
    only for German businesses.
    For a Belgium entry it was accepted.
    Strange: there ie an english category “Machine Knife Supplier” though!!!

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