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Mystery solved: Google Maps blurred the faces of dogs for a reason

Google Mapsin addition to having a world map that helps to locate oneself, to know where there is traffic or to know the train and bus schedules, it allows one to see the streets (street view) as if you were walking around the place. When Google makes the visual capture of the sites there are people, to whom they blur face for privacy, however, it has drawn attention that technology is also doing it with animals.


People have been wondering why blur the face of pets, do dogs need to take care of their privacy too?

were the users of Reddit who identified that Google Maps has been blurring the face of some furry onesso that they supposedly cannot be identified by users when using the Street View tool.


This year in Spain the Animal Protection Law was approved, so some thought that it was something local and that Google had done this to comply with the new regulations, however, It turned out that it is a measure that goes more for the technological side than for the protection of animals.

Google’s reason is that Street View content is created from a 360° video. In these, to save yourself some manual work, have applied Artificial Intelligence algorithms that recognize faces and license plates. When they are detected, the software immediately blurs them.


In this way, the Google algorithm has begun to blur the faces of the animals without further ado. Not so much because of their concern for being recognized, but as collateral action to their way of working.

“Since we created Street View content from user-submitted 360 video recordings, we apply our algorithms to automatically blur faces and license plates”, says Google, according to the British newspaper TheMirror.

Even so, some have questioned whether this algorithm includes the faces of animals, because although some consider their dogs and cats as part of their family and even “children”, physically their faces have nothing to do with that of humans. .


Given this, it could be explained that it is possible that some users have requested that their pet’s face be deleted so that it does not appear visible in Street View.

“When users submit non-video content, we don’t apply blur technology automatically, but users can use the blur tool in the street view app if you want to apply blur to your own photos […] If you find your face, license plate, or home in a user contribution and want the image removed, please use the Report Image Problem feature.” In other words, users can also request that an aspect that bothers them be blurred.

That way it would explain why there are some dogs that appear in Street View with their trunks blurred and others appear completely visible. Even if Google’s algorithm were wrong, this is not a new regulation for the protection of the privacy of animals.

Even so, it has not prevented Reddit users from joking with the blurring of the furry faces with comments such as: “It doesn’t matter, dogs are recognized by their butts”, among others.

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