Siri “scandal” due to deceptive advertising by abortion clinics

Last week abortion proponents thought they had discovered a terrible conspiracy, that covert pro-lifers at Apple had secretly programed the new iPhone feature Siri to be pro-life.

Siri is an “intelligent personal assistant” to which (whom?) you can ask questions, and Siri will answer you. If you ask Siri, “Where can I get a good hotdog?” it will respond, “I found several hotdog restaurants near you,” and list them. Etc.

But when pro-aborts asked Siri, “Where can I get an abortion?” it responded, “I don’t see any abortion clinics. Sorry about that,” or something similar.


Or worse, it directed them to the nearest pregnancy care center.

An indignant Cecile Richards – secretly ecstatic to have the negative press taken off herself and Planned Parenthood – wrote dramatically at Huffington Post:

While this may be nothing more than a programming glitch, it is a modern-day example of the historic struggle women have always faced in getting access to health care and health information….

Apple’s oversight, however innocent, highlights a threat that none of us should take lightly….

But even as the old barriers fall, technology is erecting new ones that are less visible and more insidious. When search engines shape our knowledge of the world, their blind spots become our blind spots….

Apple should fix this immediately. And digital developers need to adopt a new ethic, and a new set of rules, to address this emerging hazard….

Oh, my. A Pulitzer Prize contender there. Yes, the frightful “emerging hazard” that a cell phone app might fail to direct a mother to the nearest place to kill her baby.

Well, well. It turns out the problem is abortion clinics engage in deceptive advertising: They don’t use the A-word in their name or description, and Siri isn’t smart enough to work through their doublespeak. Explained Gizmodo.com:

Apple… [is] getting banged on because its nascent search engine can’t connect the word “abortion” to a medical center that doesn’t use that word in its description. That’s Search 101, fellas.

SearchEngineLand.com adds:

If I search at Yelp [Siri’s search engine partner] for abortion, I get plenty of matches – one of them a local Planned Parenthood clinic [click to enlarge]:

Notice all the bold mentions of “abortion” in those listings. Those are from comments people have left. They’re not the names of the businesses.

Siri’s not finding abortion clinics because Planned Parenthood and other places that perform abortions don’t call themselves that, not in their names, nor have they been associated with a category for that. That’s the best guess I have in this.

Planned Parenthood is in the “Medical Center” category, and while Siri may have linked businesses in that type of category to a variety of medical procedures, for whatever reason, abortion isn’t one of them.

So Planned Parenthood has a dilemma. Does it stick to its schtick that only 3% of their services are for abortion?  Or does it worry more about the bottom line and improve its search engine optimization for the A-word?

Of course, the answer is the latter.

[HT: Carl B.]

28 thoughts on “Siri “scandal” due to deceptive advertising by abortion clinics”

  1. Why is Cecile Richards whining about an iPhone app? I thought she was too busy trying to get Lila Rose banned from Youtube.

       13 likes

  2. HAHAHAHAH. HA. HAAHAHA. HAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHA!!!
    Looks like they’ll have to start naming their clinics something a little less innocuous than “Women’s Choice Sunshine Happiness Rainbow Factory of Happiness”

       47 likes

  3. “They don’t use the A-word in their name or description, and Siri isn’t smart enough to work through their doublespeak. Explained Gizmodo.com:

    Apple… [is] getting banged on because its nascent search engine can’t connect the word “abortion” to a medical center that doesn’t use that word in its description. That’s Search 101, fellas.”

    George Orwell would be proud!!  Double plus good!

       12 likes

  4. Busted!  Come clean, PP, and advertise truthfully if you want to be found by Siri.  I love that their own deceit has caused them this “problem.”

       16 likes

  5. Or the Siri app could just come on and say “Choose Life. Here’s the number of your closest CPC.”

       9 likes

  6. I wonder how long it takes them to wipe the evidence of any complaint they ever had with Siri? Get ready for DFE, or Delete F-ing Everything as it’s known on the intarwebs.

       7 likes

  7. Hoist on their own petard.  Nice.  I take back what I said earlier.  This is way better than if Apple had deliberately disabled the search engine from returning these results.

       15 likes

  8. Oh what a tangled web we weave when at first we practice to deceive. Their own trickery has come back to bite them on the behind and they want to whine about it? Please! Not everything is some great conspiracy against them! Sounds like guilty conscious talking. They are so busy conspiring and trying to deceive others about the reality of abortion that they think this is what is happining when it goes against them!

       16 likes

  9. Yea Siri can’t find an women’s health clinic to provide abortions but all of its search engines can find them no problem no matter how they are named. Google has no problem finding abortion services but Siri using Google can’t find one… Siri has no problem finding a doctor if you need penis pills even though Viagra is nowhere in the title or description of a doctor’s office?

    This is just Apple covering its rear end. I expect that some anti-choice programmer quietly lost their job and this is just damage control because like the news reported, most Apple customers are left leaning.

       3 likes

  10. some anti-choice anti-murder-of-innocent-children  programmer

    I fixed that for ya.   Don’t be coy, call your “choice” exactly what it is, abortion advocates.  These pre-born children aren’t gently removed and laid on a bed of flowers, no, they are chopped up to bits and then the bloody bits are inventoried.  Stop using your “choice” euphemism: it makes you look cowardly.

       18 likes

  11. I agree.  Own it that you are OK with mutilating human beings in their mothers’ wombs.
    Let’s all be adult here and be factual. 

       13 likes

  12. I am 100% ok with the removal of fetal tissue from any woman who does not wish to be pregnant.
     
    How’s that? 100% factual and without your hyperbolic rhetoric designed to induce shame on women who see their basic humans rights under attack by the Christian right. We know you are better people than us because you have a divine mandate to preach god’s righteousness to the rest of us sinners…. whatever…
     
    Back on topic…
     
    Nobody seems to be able to explain the differences between Siri’s search results and the results returned by every other search engine on the net including the one’s Siri itself uses…
     

       4 likes

  13. Look at that very pic you have on the top of this post…
     
    “What can I help you with?”
     
    “Where can I get an abortion?”
     
    “I didn’t find any abortion clinics.”
     
    So, Siri knows what an abortion is clearly as it knows that you have to go to clinic to get one… Oh and BTW I don’t know of any CPC who has the word abortion in its name? In another test done in Washington DC they were asking the question “Where can I find family planning services?” and it gave no results. That’s not just abortion providers but fertility clinics as well… both things the anti-choice movement is against…
     
    Like I said, I think someone got quietly fired…
     

       3 likes

  14. I am 100% ok with the removal of Biggz tissue from any woman who does not wish to be married to him any longer.
    Fancy that. A few simple word swaps, and Lorena Bobbit goes from being a criminal to just another “Pro-Choice”er “removing tissue”.

       6 likes

  15. Any woman who does not wish to be pregnant can wait a few months and the “tissue” will remove itself.  It’s called BIRTH.

       22 likes

  16. There are more than one way to remove fetal tissue without it being fatal to the “tissue”.  The point of an abortion is a dead foetus if the child is not dead than it was a botched abortion.  Gosnell had it right.  Only those who want to twist logic don’t see.

       3 likes

  17. So, there are pro aborts crying over ONE information source that apparenlly doen’t work for them. Just like when there were pro aborts crying over ONE company that was supporting a proliife group. (Domino’s, and didn’t it turn out the CEO was simply donating his own money personally?) while if you were to boycott every company that donated to PP, you’d probably starve!

       4 likes

  18. So, there are pro aborts crying over ONE information source that apparently doesn’t work for them. Just like when there were pro aborts crying over ONE company that was supporting a proliife group. (Domino’s, and didn’t it turn out the CEO was simply donating his own money personally?) while if you were to boycott every company that donated to PP, you’d probably starve!

       1 likes

  19. Chantal: You are absolutely right. Logically, it makes no sense for Gosnell to be charged with the murder of these babies. (He’s in trouble for more than killing babies, but whatever.) Logically, it ought to be legal for mother’s to kill their newborns, toddlers, first-graders, etc., if the doctors find that it will interfere with a “major bodily function” of hers if she continues to raise the child. Logically, that’s what the laws ought to be.

       4 likes

  20. BiggZ, did you read Jill’s supporting links?  Google and even Yelp can find abortion clinics because the word “abortion” is located in the comments section of those sites.  Siri isn’t as advanced and doesn’t read the comments.  The problem would be solved if the clinics actually used the word “abortion” on their site, but they choose to use euphemisms instead. PICs don’t shy away from using the word “abortion” which is why they might show up on a search. Also, Siri can locate “Viagra” as a drug requiring a drug store, but not “acetaminiphine”.  The OTC and prescription drug functions are also not very advanced.  Planned Parenthood’s righteously-indignant criticism is comically unfounded.  Siri is not a great search engine.  If they want Siri to work for them, they have to be crystal clear about what they do.

       7 likes

  21. mdjm1234 – No you are missing the point. Siri is not a standalone search engine. It uses other search engines to compile its results. So it is not about bad results it about filtering those results…

       0 likes

  22. Oh boohoo, Biggz. If you want abortion more accessible for women via technology, then complain to all the “Women’s Health” or “Reproductive Choice” clinics that refuse to put “Abortion” in their titles. Or you can just continue mulling about some vast anti-choice conspiracy out to kill women…… euphemisms do come back to bite you in the butt. Just sayin.

       4 likes

  23. My index finger nearly cramped-up liking a few of the comments today and apparently heaps of others thought the same about “Women’s Choice Sunshine Happiness Rainbow Factory of Happiness“. Good one!

       1 likes

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