Skip to main content

Google's pro-gay doodle sends message of support

By Euan McKirdy, for CNN
updated 7:24 AM EST, Fri February 7, 2014
Google's Sochi Olympics doodle
Google's Sochi Olympics doodle
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Google doodle supports LGBT community with rainbow flag and Olympic Charter quote
  • Putin's government criticized for its anti-gay stance
  • UN Secretary General also shows support for LGBT community in IOC speech

(CNN) -- Google has made a bold statement against discrimination on its home page.

The search giant's rainbow Olympic-themed logo, posted to mark the first day of the Sochi Winter Games, sends a powerful message of support for not only gay athletes competing in the games, but for the gay community at large and its supporters.

The company often changes its logo to reflect current events or to mark significant anniversaries. The latest "Google doodle" features images of athletes involved in Winter Olympic events, against a backdrop colored like the rainbow flag, the adopted symbol of the movement for gay rights.

Unlike the current iteration, Google doodles usually conform to the company logo's color scheme.

Olympics considered 'Putin's Games'
Threat leads to changes on flights to Russia
See hotel horrors happening in Sochi

Under the search bar, the company quotes the Olympic Charter, which promises all athletes the right to practice sport.

"The practice of sport is a human right. Every individual must have the possibility of practicing sport, without discrimination of any kind and in the Olympic spirit, which requires mutual understanding with a spirit of friendship, solidarity and fair play," the Charter excerpt reads.

The quoted paragraph is the fourth in the Charter's "fundamental principles of Olympism" (pdf).

The colored logo is a direct rebuke to Russian president Vladimir Putin's government, whose recently-introduced anti-gay legislation, the so-called anti-gay propaganda law, has been a focal point of critics of these Games. Opponents argue that the laws that Putin's government enacted last year are in contravention to the spirit of the Games.

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak, recently warned both spectators and athletes against promoting gay rights during the Olympics. Last month Anatoly Pakhomov, the Mayor of Sochi, drew ridicule by suggesting that the city was devoid of gay people.

Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary general, used his speech to the International Olympic Committee on Thursday to offer support to the LGBT community, saying that "many professional athletes, gay and straight, are speaking out against prejudice."

Google's undisputed position as the world's most-used search engine means that this is a rebuke that may be seen by billions.

The Sochi Winter Olympics officially open today and will run until the 23rd of February.

READ: Sochi: After weeks of worry, a pretty smooth start to Olympics spectacle

READ: Sochi 2014: Winter Olympics by the numbers

READ: Dacha, chacha and a gay bar: 9 ways Sochi surprises

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
This looks like a ghost ship, but it's actually the site of a tense international standoff between the Philippines and China.
updated 11:55 AM EDT, Sat July 26, 2014
The reported firing of artillery from Russian territory is a sign Vladimir Putin has escalated the Ukraine battle, says CNN's military analyst Rick Francona.
updated 4:46 AM EDT, Sun July 27, 2014
The young boy stops, stares, throws ammunition casings at the reporter's feet without a word.
updated 8:37 AM EDT, Sun July 27, 2014
A picture taken on June 28, 2014 shows a member of Doctors Without Borders (MSF) putting on protective gear at the isolation ward of the Donka Hospital in Conakry, where people infected with the Ebola virus are being treated. The World Health Organization has warned that Ebola could spread beyond hard-hit Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone to neighbouring nations, but insisted that travel bans were not the answer.
The worst ebola outbreak in history spreads out of control in West Africa. CNN's Michael Holmes reports.
updated 8:48 PM EDT, Fri July 25, 2014
Sure, Fido is a brown Lab. But inside, he may also be a little green.
updated 4:06 PM EDT, Thu July 24, 2014
ITN's Dan Rivers reports from the hospital where those injured by an attack in Gaza were being treated.
updated 9:03 AM EDT, Mon July 28, 2014
Photograph of an undisclosed location by Patrycja Makowska
Patrycja Makowska likes to give enigmatic names to the extraordinarily beautiful photographs she shoots of crumbling palaces.
updated 4:04 AM EDT, Wed July 23, 2014
When the Costa Concordia and its salvage convoy finally depart Giglio, the residents will breathe a sigh of relief -- and shed a tear.
updated 2:08 PM EDT, Fri July 25, 2014
Flight attendants are wearing black ribbons to show solidarity with fallen colleagues in "a tribute to those who never made it home."
CNN joins the fight to end modern-day slavery by shining a spotlight on its horrors and highlighting success stories.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT