Google has officially apologised for a flaw in its Translate tool, which translated the word “gay” into a litany of offensive terms — whether you were translating English into Russian, French, Spanish, or Portuguese — like “fag,” “faggot,” “queen,” “fairy,” “sodomite,” and “pansy boy.”
Andre Banks, executive director of All Out, an LGBT campaign group, first spotted the translation flaw and pointed it out on Twitter on Jan. 24.
Two days later, Google fixed its Translator, and released the following statement to All Out:
As soon as we were informed that some of our translations for certain terms were serving inappropriate results, we immediately began working to fix the issue. We apologise for any offence this has caused people. Our systems produce translations automatically based on existing translation on the web, so we appreciate when users point out issues such as this.
All Out is currently celebrating the “victory” on its home page, and on Twitter.