Google goes anti-anti-gay
Big Tech heavyweight Google has announced the removal of a “controversial” app from its Play Store. The app in question, developed by Living Hope Ministries (a 30-year old Christian group) is built around “conversion therapy” – the theory that homosexual people can be “cured” of their “affliction” and rendered heterosexual, and the therapy that is based on it. Google promised to remove the app after pressure from a gay rights lobby, citing the fact that mainstream medical professionals consider conversion therapy not only ineffective, but psychologically harmful.
Google’s share price has risen by 13% so far this year
Source: Yahoo Finance
Last Thursday, a Google spokesperson said: “After consulting with outside advocacy groups, reviewing our policies, and making sure we had a thorough understanding of the app and its relation to conversion therapy, we’ve decided to remove it from the Play Store, consistent with other app stores.” Amazon, Apple, and Microsoft have already removed the offending app.
Chad Griffin, Human Rights Campaign president, said the following in a statement: “Google and other platforms that have pulled this app are taking an important step to protect LGBTQ youth.” The Campaign had previously excluded a rating of Google in its Corporate Equality Index over the app – a big drop for a company that has previously scored a “perfect 100”.
Despite the furore, Living Hope Ministries claims it has been misrepresented, and that a connection to conversion therapy is misleading. In a January blog post, the group criticised Apple’s decision to pull its app, and said it had been designed to serve “people feeling conflicted about their faith and sexuality”.
Dominion holds Alphabet, the parent company of Google, in its Global Trends Managed Fund.
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