White People Are The Default For Google Images

Google the word "hand," and the images you get are almost all white. Same goes for "arm," "leg" and "face"

May 26, 2015 at 12:26 PM ET

Our lives tend to be whitewashed in ways we don’t necessarily notice. For instance, searching “hand” on Google Images will prompt a slew of hands with Caucasian skin. Same with “arm.” And “leg.” And “face.”

Johanna Burai, a student at Stockholm’s Beckmans College of Design, summarized what she believes to be the whiteness of the Internet in her final project called World White Web“This is a crystal clear example of how the norm of whiteness manifests itself—the white body is neutral. The search result is just one example of how being white is a norm in society,” she told The Fader.

Burai published several images of hands with different skin tones on her project’s website and encouraged people to share them on social media to bump them higher up in the search results. “Sharing on websites like Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter can boost the ranking on Google. Make sure that you make your posts ‘public’ so that others may share them,” the website says.

That won’t be an easy task: Vocativ Googled different body parts and found just how prevalent white skin is in results– it doesn’t make much difference whether you’re searching for “arm,” or “leg” or “hand”:






Read More:

This Show’s Hashtag Is Changing The Conversation About Race (Vocativ)

World White Web Wants To End Discriminatory Search Results (The Fader)