Google pairs with US State Department to host images from Iraq’s National Museum
November 24, 2009 §
Google has announced that it will host 14,000 images of artifacts contained in Iraqi’s National Museum. The museum contains countless artifacts from the Stone Age, Babylonian, Assyrian and Islamic periods. The images are scheduled to be posted early next year and will be paid for by Google and the US State Department. Eric Schmidt, Google’s CEO, stated “I can think of no better use of our time and our resources than to make the images and ideas from your civilisation, from the very beginnings of time, available to billions of people worldwide.”
I find it very interesting that Google is being involved in what appears to be cultural diplomacy. It is no secret that the US has received criticism for its dealings in Iraq from the international community. Cultural diplomacy had long been a part of international relations, but it was abandoned in recent times. The Obama administration is trying to reintroduce that in part to mend international views of the United State’s. What is especially interesting about all of this is the inclusion of the technology juggernaut Google. Is it dangerous for a private company to become entangled in international politics? I think it could, but the exposure for google will be monstrous. Here’s to Google for continuing to be the innovators in our ever-changing technological world.