This Is Africa recently did a simple experiment. We did an image search for “African children” on Google. The results were eye-opening especially when compared to Google searches for “American children” and “European children.” While the other two searches yielded images of cheerful, happy children, the image search for “African children” turned up many disturbing images of starving, distressed and yes, even gun-toting minors. Is this the real Africa or does Google need to play an active role in changing how the world sees the continent?
Death, disease, disaster and despair. For a long time, these are words that have defined how the rest of the world sees Africa. How much has that changed? Going by the evidence of a recent experiment conducted by This Is Africa, not much.
Africa’s “sad” children
When know you noticed it too. Google spits out more unflattering results for “African children” than it does for the other searches. Going by the image results, Africa’s children are sad-faced, poverty-stricken and so undernourished, they are at death’s door. But that’s not all, if you’re not happy with your results Google has some suggestions for alternative searches for all three. See if you notice anything “off” in the options provided.