Google Maps Removes Calorie-Burning Cupcake Counter over Complaints About Fat Shaming

Google Maps Shows Walking Distance As Calories And People Are Pissed

The idea behind the concept was simple enough - to let users know how many calories they could be burning if they made a decision to walk instead of drive a route, The Washington Post noted.

We understand that such feature could have triggered users with eating disorders, but for many users who are trying to lose weight, such functionality could have helped in their weight loss journey.

According to media reports, a Google representative stated that the Google Maps team chose to withdraw the feature based on the "strong user" feedback against it. MapMyFitness (which is owned by Under Armour) has offered a feature called "Route Genius" since 2014, creates maps for walking and running based on users' fitness goals. In addition to a general feeling that the app was shaming or judgemental, individuals expressed concerns that it could have a negative effect on people with past or present eating disorders and that, because everyone's metabolism is different, the values were not usefully accurate. "Not to mention just generally shamey". The inability to turn the feature off compounded the concerns.

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Reportedly, Google chose to give up on a new, experimental feature which first appeared on iOS about a week ago. To illustrate those calories, the app said how many mini-cupcakes a person would burn during the jaunt. If you already have walking selected, the calories are shown in the step-by-step directions, but not the map. "Honestly I don't understand", wrote a Twitter user who goes by the name "Bring Your Own Demon".

The feature should have been withdrawn on Tuesday evening, but users that still see this should expect it to be gone very soon.

It's spectacularly bad timing on Google's part. Google, for what sane people would consider to be cute, used the cupcake emoji along with terms that stated things such as "you've burned 125 calories - that's more than 1 mini cupcake!". They were pink - whatever flavor that is.

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