Google have changed their predictive search function to remove derogatory terms associated with Maori.
The Weekend Herald contacted the global internet search giant on Thursday after a New Zealand academic found when typing "Maori are" on the website, its AutoComplete system offered the adjectives "stupid, lazy, scum and violent".
Auckland University of Technology PhD scholar Steven Elers was using Google to research the portrayal of Maori in advertising when he discovered the descriptions.
Google said it would look into disabling the feature. By yesterday, it had done so for Maori language.
The function appeared to have already been cancelled for Australians and Israelis as no adjectives appeared. "We have a small set of removal policies for things like pornography, violence and hate speech," a spokesman said on Thursday.
Kiwis are still described as dumb, racist and stupid when using the search function. English are boring and rude, Irish drunk and thick, and Chinese are "everywhere".
Mr Elers said he had been contacted by multiple media agencies since the Herald published the story yesterday.