A number of Satellite Navigation systems have been recalled after the voices giving directions have become over-familiar and prone to racist and sexist opinions. The GPS devices are only supposed to give spoken directions to drivers but have been coming increasingly confident over the past few months, and now manufacturers have received a number of complaints about inappropriate and offensive comments.
‘I just wanted taking to South London,’ said one London commuter, Jennifer Thompson. ‘Turn left down Brixton Road…’ it said, before adding, ’This used to be a lovely area…’ Other comments have included ‘Turn right onto Blackfriars Bridge. Though we’re probably not allowed to call it that anymore…’ and ‘Turn left onto Church Lane or ‘Mosque Lane’ soon, I shouldn’t wonder the way things are going…’
‘I tried ignoring it…’ said Ms Thompson, ‘but as we went past the Caribbean Law Centre, the Sat Nav began to sigh and tut and then this whole racist tirade came out. ‘And how come we have to have them reading the news? I mean it’s our news, ain’t it, and why don’t you never see no white runners in Team GB – cos it’s us that’s being discriminated against that’s why…’
Women drivers in particular have also complained of some Sat Navs patronizing them or just laughing at their choice of lane or driving speed. ‘At the next exit, turn left, luv. If we ever bleedin’ get there,’ and ‘You have reached your destination, dear. Though the person you are visiting has probably died of old age.’
The devices in question are being collected at designated stores and will be reprogrammed in Germany. ‘I tell you what I don’t mind yer Germans so much…’ said one of the machines. ‘I mean, if you look at it, a lot of what Adolf Hitler actually said made a lot of sense…’