Future Tense

Google Maps Says Edward Snowden Is in the White House

Honey, I’m home!

Screencap of Google Maps

These days we usually only see Edward Snowden through video chats and telepresence robots, but Google Maps says he’s in the White House at this very moment! Look, it says so right there.

OK fine, he’s not actually there, but the whole situation is a pretty clever prank. It seems that someone used a Google-verified location—in this case a probably-not-real snowboard shop called Edward’s Snow Den that lists its hours as 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily—but changed its address to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue to create White House Snowden. (I tried calling the number listed on the Edwards Snow Den Google Plus page, but it just rang. For what it’s worth, it has a Seattle area code.)

Google, which is clearly trying to clean things up, has already removed the location’s verification and deleted some reviews people had left. The Next Web reports that commenters had posted things like, “great source of classified information” and “top notch info on the cheap.” Google hasn’t been able to get rid of the entry on the White House itself yet. For now you can see for yourself.

In other news, the controversy over a large Snowden statue in Brooklyn rages on.