Thursday, June 26, 2014

I stayed at the…Ducor Intercontinental

When I first arrived in Liberia, Google Maps was in its infancy planet-wide, and West Africa was lagging behind the West Coast. Over the years, the platform has filled in rapidly, so that now there are decent representations of every city in West Africa, Monrovia included, even if the maps are riddled with a variety of errors, and the bandwidth-heavy platform is not that easy to access in the region. 

And then there are some unique issues. Specifically, there is no Google Maps symbol for "abandoned hotel." Following a certain logic, someone has gone and labelled the Ducor with the regular, normal, active hotel icon of a sleeping person in a bed, and called it the Ducor Intercontinental. Which is, basically, what it is, after all.

Except that it's not: what the API's logic then leads to is a full rate-and-review follow-on crowd-sourcing extension, which leads, absurdly, to the ability of people to review their stay at the Ducor, which some wise-cracking jack-ass crassly did about a year ago.  

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