Saturday, April 29, 2006

You want rice with that?

Tens of thousands of Chinese net users are calling for Google to rethink its Chinese identity.

It's less than two weeks since the company announced it would be known as "Guge", represented by the ideograms for valley and song, which, it said, conveyed "the sense of a fruitful and productive search experience".

However, already in trouble over bowing to censorship demands from Beijing, the search engine is now facing flack for choosing a name considered by many to be awkward, nonsensical or even rude.

In a poll conducted by, 85% were opposed to Guge.

Soso, the leader of an online campaign against it, said: "When I first heard the name Guge, I couldn't help laughing. It sounded like 'fool', 'funny' and 'fart'."

Soso is founder of, a site which allows superimposition of users' own names on Google branding.

In what seems to be a sideswipe at Google's submissive attitude to Beijing one of the most popular alternatives is "Good Gou", which translates as "Good Dog".


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