A few weeks ago, the Android robot that we’ve all come to know and love over the years was found in a very compromising position in a distant corner of Google Maps. Someone had taken advantage of the Map Maker feature of Google Maps to make a joke, but as you might have guessed, Google was not amused.
“As some of you know already, we have been experiencing escalated attacks to spam Google Maps over the past few months,” writes Google’s Pavithra Kanakarajan over on the Google Product Forums.
“The most recent incident was particularly troubling and unfortunate – a strong user in our community chose to go and create a large scale prank on the Map. As a consequence, we suspended auto-approval and user moderation across the globe, till we figured out ways to add more intelligent mechanisms to prevent such incidents.”
Until Google can establish a system to keep these vandals at bay, all Map Maker submissions will be handled manually by the Maps team, which means that it might take some time before you see your legitimate changes reflected on Google Maps.
Kanakarajan says that Google hopes to have the system back up and running “as soon as possible.” Farewell Google Maps pranks — we hardly knew ye.