PR smokescreen tip no. 142: How do you distract the wider world from your company's latest embarrassing run in with the European Commission? Join a centuries-old search for a mythological beast.
At least, that's one way of looking at Google's week. Days after the search giant's apparently anticompetitive activities have come under fire from the European Commission, Google has launched a neat new section to its Street View project: you can now explore the surface and depths of Scotland's notorious Loch Ness. (We should note that the timing of the search companies latest stunt are pure coincidence, the date was actually chosen to mark the day on which the infamous 'Surgeon's Photo' of Nessie was published in a newspaper).
All that aside, there's absolutely no denying the Google have quite literally taken the word 'search' to whole new levels with their latest Streetview addition. Working with divers, local expert Adrian Shine and boats armed with Google's Street View cameras, Google Map users can now skim the surface of the loch, taking in views of Fort Augustus Abbey, Urquhart Castle and the Loch Ness exhibition centre.
And more imporantly, they may have also spotted Nessie itself, adding further to the myth of the monster when they captured the following image of a strange lump floating on the surface of the water. Could it actually be the Loch Ness Monster?
Here's hoping Google follows up the project with a full exploration of Oklahoma in the hopes of finding Bigfoot.