Home & Office

Web search error adds Muppet to Bin Laden cause

A search for Osama Bin Laden on Google's new search engine returns a picture of him sat alongside Bert from Sesame Street, a fact which seems to have escaped some anti-American protesters
Written by ZDNet UK, Contributor

The danger of relying on the Internet for sourcing images was illustrated graphically this week when protestors at an anti-American Islamic rally in Bangladesh were pictured carrying posters of Osama Bin Laden flanked by Sesame Street character Bert.

The images on the posters, which were taken by several photographers including a Reuters photographer, appear to have originated from Websites. The crucial image, of Bin Laden sitting side by side with Bert, was apparently put together by the creators of the "Bert is Evil" Web page, which purports to show Bert consorting with other infamous people, including Adolf Hitler and Jerry Springer.

One possible explanation for the use of this picture is that it is one of the first images to appear on Google's recently-launched image-searching engine when the term 'Osama Bin Laden' is entered.

A Reuters editor was quoted as saying the images were authentic.

Have your say instantly, and see what others have said. Click on the TalkBack button and go to the ZDNet news forum.

Let the editors know what you think in the Mailroom. And read other letters.

Editorial standards