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Tech Giant Google Dropped From LGBT Equality Index

Google has not yet commented on the matter

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The Google name is displayed outside the company's office in London, Britain. VOA

An anti-LGBTQ app on the PlayStore that influences a person’s sexual orientation using psychological or spiritual interventions has raised questions about Google’s corporate equality ideals leading to the search engine’s suspension from the CEI rating.

The app “Conversation therapy” originates from a non-profit organisation — Living Hope Ministries — which “proclaims a Christ-centred, Biblical world-view of sexual expression rooted in one man and one woman in a committed, monogamous, heterosexual marriage for life because anything less than this ideal falls short of God’s best for humanity”.

US-based LGBTQ civil rights advocacy group — Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation — has suspended Google from its 2019 Corporate Equality Index (CEI) for failing to remove the app from PlayStore, USA Today reported on Thursday.

The CEI is a report published by the HRC Foundation as a tool to rate American businesses on their treatment of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) employees, consumers and investors.

“Pending remedial steps by the company to address this app that can cause harm to the LGBTQ community, the CEI rating is suspended,” the report noted.

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Thai LGBT community participates in Gay Freedom Day Parade in Bangkok, Thailand. VOA

“Conversation therapy” is a practice that is used to influence a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity using psychological or spiritual interventions.

Apple, Amazon, and Microsoft have removed the app from their platforms and currently, petition-filing platform Change.org has collected over 1,40,000 signatures for removal of this app from PlayStore.

Google’s suspension from the CEI comes as a shock especially because the company has been known to support the LGBTQ community.

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In 2018, Google scored a full 100 per cent on the CEI report.

Google has not yet commented on the matter. (IANS)

Next Story

Google Will Start Giving EU Smartphone Users a Choice of Browsers and Search Apps on Android

Android users who open the Google Play store after the update will be given the option to install up to five search apps and five browsers, Gennai said

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FILE - A woman walks past the logo for Google at the China International Import Expo in Shanghai, Nov. 5, 2018. VOA

Google said Thursday it will start giving European Union smartphone users a choice of browsers and search apps on its Android operating system, in changes designed to comply with an EU antitrust ruling.

Following an Android update, users will be shown two new screens giving them the new options, Google product management director Paul Gennai said in a blog post.

The EU’s executive Commission slapped the Silicon Valley giant with a record 4.34 billion euro (then $5 billion) antitrust fine in July after finding that it abused the dominance of Android by forcing handset and tablet makers to install Google apps, reducing consumer choice.

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Android users who open the Google Play store after the update will be given the option to install up to five search apps and five browsers, Gennai said. Pixabay

The commission had ordered Google to come up with a remedy or face further fines. The company, which is appealing the ruling, said the changes are being rolled out over the next few weeks to both new and existing Android phones in Europe.

ALSO READ: Measles Spread in Google’s Headquarters, Employees Discussing Ways To Protect Themselves

Android users who open the Google Play store after the update will be given the option to install up to five search apps and five browsers, Gennai said. Apps will be included based on their popularity and shown in random order. Users who choose a search app will also be asked if they want to change the default search engine in the phone’s Chrome browser.

Android is the most widely used mobile operating system, beating even Apple’s iOS. (VOA)