So this is what you do with the biggest databank of information in the world: You create your own celebrity gaydar.
One wonders how people previously managed to answer such vexing questions such as, “Is Hugh Jackman gay?” prior to today. (One might also suggest that if you really need to know, you should be forced to do your own research.)
But no, in what Gawker is calling the “world’s first sexual barometer,” Google has created a one-mouse-click solution.
When you type “Hugh Jackman gay,” for example, the search engine, having distilled through all the rumours and magazine articles and various online sites, pops up its best guess, literally: “Best guess for Hugh Jackman sexual orientation is straight.” (Whew, that’s a relief!)
The thing is, it doesn’t even work all that well. Not every star makes the gaydar grade, and sometimes it just gets plain confused (it still hasn’t figured out Lady Gaga). Often, the news is one big yawn: Angeline Jolie is bisexual. Neil Patrick Harris is gay. (Surprise!) To put Google to the real test, we tried Tom Cruise. Nothing.
In addition, if you click on “Feedback,” you get to give your own assessment of Google’s best guess. “Is this accurate? Yes or No,” the search engine asks. What fun.
You might ask whether Google couldn’t put its prodigious resources to more productive use. But at the very least, this new system presumably gets the answer out of the way so that everyone can move on to the really big questions, like: Has Demi finally kicked Ashton to the curb for sneaking out with that cute blonde?
Get back to us, Google.
Is this latest Google upgrade stupid fun – or homophobia in disguise?