SLIDESHOW

Messing With Google Street Views

When people spot Google's Street View cars driving by, they do the darnedest things.

Don't Look Now! Here Comes the Google Street View Mobile

Google's Street View service is a handy mapping tool but also a source of great amusement when it comes to exploring both strange and mysterious moments caught in the crosshairs of Google's Street View camera.

While PCWorld has explored everything from the odd to the unexplained, it hasn't shined a spotlight on those that enjoy messing with Google's all-seeing Street View camera when it passes by. Here is a collection of some very self-conscious people who were aware of the Google Street View camera's presence and who decided to do something crazy or stupid and definitely memorable.

Note: Google Street View updates imagery on a regular basis around the world, and some images referred to in this slideshow may not be available in the form displayed. Also, for some of the location links a Google account may be necessary for the image to appear properly.

Scuba Chasers

In Bergen, Hordaland, Norway, two friends of the Google Street View car driver waited for the car for 20 minutes in scuba gear on the side of the road, and then popped out to make this practical joke on their friend and local Street View users, says the Huffington Post.

Playing Dead

Suburban England strikes again, this time with a girl playing dead upon the arrival of the Google Street View car. She told the United Kingdom's Daily Mail she was playing with her friends, but they're nowhere to be seen in this view of a street in Worcester.

Street View Flasher

It may not be Bourbon Street, but that didn't stop this young Illinois woman from showing the Google Street View car some spring break spirit.

Not Exactly a Shrinking Violet

This woman in Uckfield, England, rushed to the window of the nursery where she worked to lift her top when the Google Street View cameras drove past. Though her bosses weren't impressed, they said she wouldn't be disciplined, according to the Daily Mail.

Horse Boy

Sparking an international media frenzy, a man wearing a horse mask appeared in several spots across the UK, hijacking street imagery of Google Street View in Aberdeen, Scotland--a true mystery, even though the BBC put its reporting muscle behind it.

Coke vs. Pepsi

It's not a David Blaine stunt, but it's mind-numbing: Going down Street View on 3800 Rue Ontario, Montreal, Canada, the blue-and-white Pepsi truck morphs into a red-and-white Coca-Cola truck. Have Coca Cola and Pepsi taken their competition to Street View? It might be just a case of the photos being taken on different days, according to Search Engine Land.

Google Gets the One-Finger Salute

A resident of rural England has strong feelings towards Google's Street View cameras, and he's not afraid to show it. Finger-pointing at the Street View cars is not an isolated phenomenon, though--Michael Wolf has put together an entire collection of such occurrences.

A Street With a View

The residents of 8 Sampsonia Way in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania have staged an art project to bring fantastic scenes to Google Street View. Participants from around the city staged scenes ranging from a parade, a garage-band practice session, a seventeenth-century sword fight, a marathon, a heroic rescue, and more. The Street View project was named aptly A Street With a View.

Superheroes Head North

At a remote Scottish pub, surrounded by fields, a superhero congregation breaks cover for the Google Street View car. It's unclear whether residents of this small Shetland isle in the UK were pranking the Street View car in their tiny village, or whether this is just how the locals roll.

Losing Your Pants Over Google

A group of Germans unhappy with Street View's arrival in their country banded together to execute an elaborate prank in which they were stalking and ambushing the Street View car, shouting "f*#k Google," showing the middle finger, and walking pant-less. They have the whole thing on video. A year later, their efforts came to fruition, as Google Street View gave up on Germany.

Can You Hear Me Now?

New Yorkers don't just burst out into song, as some musicals might make you believe. This man thought he should strike a memorable pose for the Street View cars to immortalize the moment.

Double Exposure Street View

A woman in Cardiff, United Kingdom, took a picture of the black Google Street View car that was crossing in front of her, only to find herself mirrored at that moment in Street View imagery. Left, the photo she snapped, and right, the Street View image of her, as spotted by Urlesque.

Full Moon Over Street View

This man in Celtenham, England, seems to have thought his neighbors would enjoy getting a Street View with his "full moon," in what proves to be a popular occurrence in the UK, according to The Sun, which dubbed it Google Streak View.

A Googler's Marriage Proposal

A Google employee coordinated a preannounced Street View run outside the company's Mountain View offices, so that he and his colleagues could line up along the street. He unveiled his purpose on his blog: to ask for the hand of his girlfriend in a big way, after an earlier, low-key proposal.

Giving Birth to a Fake Street View

A German advertising agency staged a live birth outside its offices, and according to Sky News, took a picture edited to look like a Street View shot. Though more a case of messing with Google than with Street View cameras, the point of the stunt was to highlight privacy issues before Street View was introduced in Germany.