Google makes LGBT rights statement with rainbow doodle ahead of Sochi Games, targets Russian anti-gay law

February 7, 2014 /LGBT News/ With the Winter Games underway in Sochi, Google quietly but vibrantly added its voice to the chorus of companies speaking out against Russia’s law restricting gay-rights activities by updating its iconic search page logo to depict illustrations of athletes skiing, sledding, curling and skating against a rainbow-colored backdrop.

Here’s the quote on Google’s landing page:

“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.” –Olympic Charter

Although Google is not an Olympics sponsor, its action came a day after three sponsors of the U.S. Olympic Committee — AT&T, DeVry University and yogurt maker Chobani — issued statements explicitly speaking out against the Russian law.

The doodle appears on Google pages worldwide, including the Russian

The 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. 

President Vladimir Putin has defended the policy, pointing out that homosexuality is legal in Russia. In a January interview, he said gay people are welcome at the games as long as they leave the children alone.

The move by Google, one of the largest and most powerful companies on the planet, comes on the same day that U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemned the persecution of homosexuals in a speech to the International Olympic Committee.


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