Google's brilliant, politically charged Olympics doodle

Google's home page honors the arrival of the Winter Olympics in Sochi. It also makes a deliberate point about human rights, using the International Olympics Committee's own words.

The message is clear. Screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

You can't have an Olympics devoid of politics.

Each hosting nation spends so much money staging the event that its rulers can't help but push some agenda or other.

The Sochi Games, which open Friday, have been bathed in the slightly stenchy waters of anti-gay propaganda.

It isn't entirely helpful when your nation's president and deputy prime minister keep insisting that gay competitors shouldn't touch children.

In this atmosphere, Google's doodlers decided to use pointed crayons to design the Sochi doodle.

Yes, there are the requisite images of various winter sports. But then consider the colored background. Why, aren't those the colors of the rainbow, seen by many as the colors of the LGBT movement?

There's more. Beneath the images is a quote from the Olympic Charter.

It reads: "The practice of sport is a human right. Every individual must have the possibility of practicing sport, without discrimination of any kind and in the Olympic spirit, which requires mutual understanding with a spirit of friendship, solidarity and fair play."

It would be hard not to imagine that this quote is a direct response to some of the anti-gay rhetoric emerging from Russia. And it's tastefully done.

I have contacted Google to ask whether the express intention was to signal a certain displeasure with the dictums from Russia and will update should I hear.

The same doodle is currently running on the Google Russia home page.

I wonder if it will remain there.

 

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