On Father’s Day, Google did something pretty cute. If you logged into your GMail account, there was a little Google reminder to “Call dad.”
Cute, no? Here’s the problem. Many people don’t have fathers. Some were abused by their father. Some recently lost their father. And they didn’t find this “cute” at all.
There’s a risk behind doing stuff like this. I’m not sure I would have thought about the negative consequences of such a seemingly harmless gesture. But, you can bet Google will think it through next time they have another “cute” idea, and stick to changing their daily Google Doodle, which, since unpersonalized, can’t be taken too offensively. It does bring up another question of Internet privacy, though. For a company who is thought to know so much about us, how far away are they from knowing which of their users has a live and caring father or not?