Heard on the Hill: Google Maps Miss the Mark

Posted October 23, 2011 at 5:30am

While poking around the interwebs, we called up a Google map of the Hill. And while the geography seemed fine, the embedded data relating to elected officials is totally bonkers.

First of all, Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) and Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Mark Pryor (D-Ark.) have all inexplicably been banished to the Capitol lawn.

Every lawmaker plotted in the close-up of the Longworth House Office Building is demarcated by a trio of stately columns — except for Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah). His icon: a man snoozing away on a bed. (Is Google accusing him of being asleep on the job?)

Across the Capitol, the maps maintain that the late Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-S.C.) is still holed up in the Russell Senate Office Building, while Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) has been tossed out on the street.

We contacted Google, but all we got was a non-response about “third-party providers” and hyper-complicated algorithms that are supposed to keep Google at the top of the Web search heap.