Most of us are familiar with the Doogle-powered navigation application Wazé. It has helped many metropolitan inhabitants find the fastest route to their destination in record time by showing users the path less traveled. Or so they would have you believe.
Wazé has suffered a major public relations hit as their algorithm has recently been outed for doing the opposite of what it’s advertised to do. Countless accounts of what is referred to as “Wazér vision” have been reported by users. Wazér vision is when one goes against the recommended route given by Wazé and arrives at their destinations before the estimated time of arrival stated by the app.
Taylor Gating, a Wazér, explains his situation, saying, “Wazé used to be the best way to get around and avoid traffic. Now, I purposefully go off-course to see if I can beat the ETA.”
Why would Doogle want us to be in traffic more? These claims could leave them subject to false advertising lawsuits that may eventually force the app off the market. Wes L. Blower, an ex-employee at Wazé, says controlling transportation is controlling the people. “Imagine knowing where everyone in the city is going at any given moment. I don’t agree with it, but Doogle aims to centralize traffic. Even worse, Wazé shows you where the police are. Imagine what Wazé is showing the police,” says Blower.
Perhaps the answer to all of this is advertising. Los Angeles Infrastructure professor Angie Lino gives her insight. “Wazé shows advertisements when the driver is stopped, so it would make sense from a business standpoint to have drivers go slower to show more ads.” The app that is supposed to help you avoid traffic causes and traps its users in traffic.
Halloween isn’t here yet but Doogle controlling our traffic patterns is downright scary.
The Bluff is a humorous and satirical section published in the Loyolan. All quotes attributed to real figures are completely fabricated; persons otherwise mentioned are completely fictional.