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Google Goes Rainbow For 2014 Winter Olympics In Homophobic Sochi

by Brandon Mercer
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(Credit: Google Logo)

(Credit: Google Logo)

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MOUNTAIN VIEW (CBS SF) — No stranger to using its corporate muscle to make political statements, on the eve of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, Google changed its ubiquitous search engine logo to rainbow colors and included a quote from the Olympic Charter at the bottom.

Google writes below the search box, “The practice of sport is a human right.”

A click on the multi-hued logo takes you to a search for “Olympic Charter.”

RELATED: Entire Olympic Charter Document

Host nation Russia recently passed a law banning “gay propaganda,” fueling a firestorm of controversy ahead of the games, and prompting several prominent gay athletes including Bay Area native Brian Boitano, to head to the games as part of the United States delegation.

“First and foremost I am an American athlete and I am proud to live in a country that encourages diversity, openness and tolerance,” said the 1988 figure skating gold medalist to the Associated Press. “As an athlete, I hope we can remain focused on the Olympic spirit which celebrates achievement in sport by peoples of all nations.”

Sochi’s mayor Anatoly Pakhomov added to the heated atmosphere last week, saying, ““It’s not accepted here in the Caucasus where we live. We do not have them [gays] in our city.”

Reporters were quick to point out a number of gay bars in the city, suggesting the mayor may be out of touch with the club scene in the resort town.

RELATED: Sochi Mayor Says No Gays In City.

The Olympic Charter, highlighted in the doodle, could one day include a mention of sexual orientation.  In a recent news conference, International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach said, “We stand against any kind of discrimination for whatever reason,” and he indicated he was receptive to the idea.

The logos or doodles, drawn up for years by Dennis Hwang and his team at Google’s campus have paid homage to holidays, international events, and occasionally, political issues, especially human rights.

Google employees take into account search engine user input, and staffer ideas, but the selection of a doodle is meant to reflect, “Google’s personality and love for innovation.”

The first doodle came from Google’s founders, who did an homage to Burning Man in 1998, just in case the site crashed, and they were too far into the Nevada desert to do anything about it.

Recent doodles have celebrated less political topics including Ukraine, Harriet Tubman, and Lunar New Year.

RELATED: List of Google Doodles

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