Google makes 'ungoogleable' unusable in Sweden

The company has reportedly placed pressure on the Language Council of Sweden for trying to add "ungoogleable" to its list of new words.

Google logo

Google has put some pressure on Sweden's Language Council after it tried to add "ungoogleable" to its list of words, according to a report out of the country.

Swedish news outlet Sverigesradio is reporting today that Google's lawyers contacted the Language Council after it announced that it would make "ungoogleable" (or, in Swedish, "ogooglebar") an official word. After "a long e-mail exchange" with the lawyers, the Council decided to drop its bid to make it a word, saying that it took "too much time and resources away from other work."

"Ungoogleable" was going to be defined as "that cannot be found on the Web using a search engine." Google reportedly believed that using its name in the word was unfair and ostensibly wanted another term to define the problem.

Google has been fighting this battle for years. In 2006, for instance, the company warned that it would crack down on those who used the term "google it" when telling someone to search the Web.

"We think it's important to make the distinction between using the word 'Google' to describe using Google to search the Internet and using the word 'google' to generally describe searching the Internet. It has some serious trademark issues," a representative for the search company told CNET at that time.

Of course, whether the term "Google" being used really is bad for the search company is up for debate. By using "google" as a verb, it's making the company a household name and putting it on par with brands like Kleenex, that have benefited from such an association for years. Google argues, however, that sometimes, those associations reflect poorly upon its business, and thus wants to leave some things unsaid.

CNET has contacted Google for comment on the report. We will update this story when we have more information.

(Via The Verge)

 

Join the discussion

Conversation powered by Livefyre

Show Comments Hide Comments