Google says it did not kill a donkey in Botswana

16 Jan 2013

No worries, the donkey is fine, Google says

Google has denied its Streetview vehicle had hit and killed a donkey in the Kweneng region of Botswana after concerned citizens contacted the internet search giant, wondering about the fate of the animal.

On Google Maps, it appears a donkey is lying on the dirt road in the wake of the vehicle.

Google, however, in a statement titled ‘Never ass-ume’, says the donkey was lying in the vehicle’s path as it approached, perhaps enjoying a dust bath. As the car got closer, the donkey got up, moved aside, and a shot taken from the rear of the vehicle shows the donkey up on its hooves, standing off to the side of the road.

“Because of the way our 360-degree imagery is put together, it looked to some that our car had been involved in an unseemly hit and run, leaving the humble beast stranded in the road,” said Kei Kawai, Group Product Manager, Google Maps.

Tina Costanza was a journalist and sub-editor at Silicon Republic