Beijing Art Student Tricks Google Maps into Naming a Street After Him

By Justine Lopez, July 14, 2017

0 0

Four years ago a graduate student at the Central Academy of Fine Arts fashioned a series of authentic-looking street signs and put them up along a no-name road in Beijing. The signs bore his name: Ge Yulu.

The signs were intended to be a part of Ge’s university project, which investigated the idea of inserting his private identity into public spaces. But because Ge’s name contains “lu” (the Chinese word for road) his sign created all sorts of confusion with a number of online maps.

Before too long the road where Ge had installed his signs was being officially referred to as “Ge Yulu” on Apple Maps, Google Maps, Baidu Maps and AutoNavi. This went on for years until the error was finally corrected in 2016.


“Ge Yulu”

"When I went to Beijing, I found that this metropolis had a lot of nooks and crannies," Ge said. "Could 'Ge Yulu' survive in such a nook, in a place people usually ignored? That was at the root of this work, this idea."

"When I first designed the project I merely thought of it as a work of art, and I didn't think that it could actually be the name for the road," he said. "But I realize that this might have affected the appearance of the city, and that it isn't exactly legal."

The road is located in eastern Beijing and measures about 460 meters long. Despite the fact that the street name has been changed, many residents still know the street as “Ge Yulu.”

"None of us knows why the road is called Ge Yulu," one resident said.

[Images via Mashable.com]

more news

Google Opens First Shenzhen Office, Third in China

Although most Google services are still blocked in the mainland, the tech titan opened a third office in Shenzhen this week.

Google Doodle Honors Pinyin Creator Zhou Youguang

The US tech giant honored Zhou on the first anniversary of his death with an animated doodle on the Google homepage.

Victoria's Secret Fashion Show 2017 Live Stream: How to Watch Online in China

How to watch the full Victoria's Secret Fashion Show Shanghai 2017 online in China.

Interview: Brian O'Shea on His Viral Online Food Series

We speak with TasteBuds' Brian O'Shea, one of the speakers at this year's CHat Shanghai conference.

The All Seeing Hand on Throat Singing and Google Algorithms

We catch up with (one-third of the) mind-bending New Zealand band The All Seeing Hand ahead of their first China tour. First stop: Beijing.

Tickets to Palace Museum to Be Sold Online Only

​The Palace Museum is going paperless – at least when it comes to tickets it is.

You Can Now Use the Google Translate App Without a VPN

No more questionable Chinese-English translations from WeChat and Baidu​!

Alibaba Buys Online Ticketing Platform Damai

Chinese E-commerce giant Alibaba has fully acquired online ticketing platform Damai.

0 User Comments

In Case You Missed It…

We're on WeChat!

Scan our QR Code at right or follow us at thatsonline for events, guides, giveaways and much more!

7 Days in China With thatsmags.com

Weekly updates to your email inbox every Wednesday

Subscribe

Download previous issues

Never miss an issue of That's Magazines!

Visit the archives

Get the App. Your essential China city companion.