Google search leads to Hitler sighting



For a man who has been dead almost 70 years and is universally reviled, Adolf Hitler has been making some surprise appearances lately.

First it was the tea kettle sold by JC Penney that bore a stunning resemblance to the Nazi leader. The item sold out online days after the news went viral.

This week, Hitler began appearing alongside a street map as a result of a search on Google for “West End Library,” a District of Columbia branch at 24th and L Streets NW.

One library staffer, reached by phone, did the search himself and expressed surprise when Hitler popped up at the upper right-hand corner of the page. “We are a public library and we do have content on him,” he said, but added that the fuhrer wouldn’t be the library’s choice for its public face.

Google, contacted by the Washington Jewish Week, blocked the image on Tuesday.

“We did find that this image was in violation of our content policy,” Jason Freidenfelds, of Google | Global Communications & Public Affairs, wrote in an email. “We rely on our community of users to flag inappropriate content.”

George Williams, spokesman for the District of Columbia Public Library, said an unknown person had placed the image into a Google+ local page that the library had not created.

“Not only didn’t we know that the Hitler picture was there, we didn’t know the Google page had been created for us, he said.

The library has claimed the page, he said, which will prevent further mischief.

[email protected] Twitter: @davidholzel

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