Exclusive: Google Maps removes offensive joke reviews from Jeffrey Epstein’s private island

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Google removed offensive joke lists and reviews from his map of Jeffrey Epsteinit is private Iceland nach The independent raised the question.

Little St James, the 75-acre refuge in the US Virgin Islands where Epstein and his allies allegedly abused numerous teenage girls, previously had two user-submitted locations on Google Maps called “Rape Center” and “Boy Thrussy Chaimber”, using a sexual slang term for gluttony.

Reviews for the so-called Rape Center included a four-star rating stating “great service and entertainment. I can recommend it!” and a one-star rating that said “the name is a bit rough, it explains the place well”.

On Thursday, Google removed those reviews and subsequently both lists of locations The independent attracted the attention of the company to them.

However, it did not remove three reviews attached to Little St James itself, which were submitted between three and four years ago and gave it an average rating of 4.7 out of five stars.

A Google spokesperson said: “As soon as we became aware of these listings, our teams took immediate action to investigate, remove content that violates the rules and put safeguards in place to prevent further abuse.

“We have clear policies that prohibit offensive and fake content, and our automated systems and trained operators work around the clock to monitor maps for suspicious behavior.

“We encourage our users to report misleading locations and inappropriate content, which helps us improve our automatic detection systems and keep the information on Maps authentic and reliable.”

One of the fake places on Little St James

(Google Maps / I Dodds)

Little St James has been the subject of intense interest and feverish speculation since Epstein’s death from apparent suicide in 2019. The billionaire bought him for $ 8 million (£ 6 million) through a shell company in 1998, transforming him in an idyllic island retreat that is often referred to as “Little St Jeff”.

Locals, however, called it a “pedophile island” and prosecutors say it was the heart of an international abuse network that transported girls ages 12 to 17 around the world in “sexual servitude” for the benefit of wealthy clients. .

Court records filed by US Virgin Islands Attorney General claim Epstein used island isolation to resist inspection by authorities and prevent victims from escaping, transporting them to and from nearby St Thomas Airport via its private helicopters.

The “Rape Center” on Google Maps has been placed in the location of a strange blue and white striped temple structure whose purpose has been the subject of obscure conjecture, while the “Chaimber” has been placed near the main palace complex of Epstein at the north end of Iceland.

(Google Maps / I Dodds)

Google relies on users to populate its world map, with rules requiring it to be “based on real experience and information” and prohibiting “intentionally false” or “unnecessary or incorrect” content.

Yet the search giant has has long struggled to control fake content, from harmless jokes and childish puns to deliberate attempts to inflate companies’ reputations or vilify their rivals. It uses artificial intelligence to search for new submissions that may be fake, with “thousands” of human workers checking for ambiguous cases.

Last year Google said blocked or removed 55 million rule-breaking reviews, 160 million photos and 3.5 million videos, as well as disabling more than 610,000 suspicious accounts and blocking more than 3 million attempts to register fake company profiles.

In June, UK Competition and Market Authority has opened an investigation into fake reviews on Google and Amazon’s services, saying he is concerned that the two tech giants “have not done enough to protect honest customers and businesses.”

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