9 Ways Google Can Help Us Normalize Breastfeeding

March 19th, 2012 by Dionna | 22 Comments
Posted in Breastfeeding/Lactivism, Compassionate Advocacy, Feed with Love and Respect, natural parenting

Google has unrivaled power to make waves on the Internet. From Gmail to Google search, YouTube to Blogger, Google products reach eyes all over the globe.

Wouldn’t it be amazing if Google used its global influence to help us normalize breastfeeding? I read at Hygiea recently that the California Breastfeeding Coalition had an idea to petition Google to dedicate one of the Google doodles to breastfeeding during World Breastfeeding Week.

I started brainstorming several ideas of what that doodle might look like – we could turn Google’s oo’s into breasts, and a simple outline of mama/baby would go above and below the word. We could turn the little “g” into the blue and white international breastfeeding symbol. We could transform the bottom of the “g” into a baby’s head and have a mama nursing incorporated into the background.

I can envision all of these things, but I cannot draw or Photoshop very well. So I turned to my very talented friend, Joni Rae of Tales of a Kitchen Witch. She agreed to make my ideas a reality – and she made them so much more awesome than I could have hoped for!

I was so excited about Joni Rae’s doodles that I was inspired to come up with a list of several more ways Google could help us normalize breastfeeding.1 Because sadly, nursing mothers still face discrimination and animosity every day, all over the world.

You can help us get Google’s attention by sending them an email – there is an example email at the bottom of this post.

So, Google, what do you say? Will you help?

9 Ways Google Can Help Us Normalize Breastfeeding

1. Feature a Google Doodle Honoring Breastfeeding

With approximately 88 billion searches per month on Google.com, a Google Doodle during World Breastfeeding Week (August 1-7, 2012) could literally be viewed by millions of people.

Breastfeeding needs to be seen in order to become normalized. It needs to be such a common sight that it barely registers for people.

Obviously Google can’t do this alone, but it can help us out by featuring a beautiful breastfeeding baby on its search engine.

Check out the rest of Joni Rae’s Google doodles at Tales of a Kitchen Witch.

2. Include the Searcher’s State Law on Breastfeeding on Every Search Result

Many states specifically protect the rights of breastfeeding pairs. For example, the Connecticut law states that no person may restrict or limit the right of a mother to breastfeed her child. (Conn. Gen. Stat. Ann. §53-34b.) Other states, like Arkansas, simply exempt breastfeeding from public indecency statutes. (A.C.A. § 5-14-112.) And there are three states that do not protect breastfeeding pairs at all – West Virginia, Nebraska, and Idaho.

Google can figure out what state we reside in when we are searching Google.com. Let’s ask Google to include a note on the top or side of every search result that lists the searcher’s breastfeeding state law. If there is no law, or if the law simply exempts nursing pairs from public indecency laws, Google could add a note that says “lobby your legislators to create a state law protecting nursing pairs,” with a link to a site that will connect the searcher to his/her representatives.

With 34,000 searches per second on Google.com, we could inform a lot of people about the rights of nursing pairs.

3. Offer Free Advertising Space to Breastfeeding Organizations

There are so many wonderful organizations and communities dedicated to supporting and normalizing breastfeeding:

NursingFreedom.org, La Leche League, Kellymom, Best for Babes, Human Milk for Human Babies, Natural Parents Network, Code Name: Mama’s “Joys of Breastfeeding Past Infancy” series, The Leaky B@@B, and more.

One of the main reasons women stop (or never start) breastfeeding is due to a lack of support. We can reach out to breastfeeding mothers who might otherwise feel isolated by advertising on Google and YouTube — the 2nd and 3rd most visited websites (just behind Facebook). Google can help us increase the visibility of supportive breastfeeding networks by promoting them on Google-owned sites.

4. List One of the Many Reasons to Breastfeed in Gmail’s Sponsored Links

From making babies healthier to decreasing a mother’s risk of disease, there is a reason that breastmilk is the biological norm.

There are at least 101 reasons to breastfeed, and many wonderful uses for breastmilk even outside of nourishing a baby.

Instead of the usual sponsored ads in your Gmail inbox, Google could feature one of the many reasons to breastfeed, with a link to one of the supportive breastfeeding organizations and communities.

5. Add World Breastfeeding Week to the Holidays on Google Calendar

Google Calendar users can choose to have federal holidays listed in their normal view. How cool would it be to have World Breastfeeding Week highlighted in the holidays? It might prompt some users to help support the events planned in their area or online.

6. Put a Breastfeeding Pair in Street Views

Google continues to update its street view images, so why not incorporate images of breastfeeding pairs?

I’m sure Google could find willing participants in many cities, like Jennifer of True Confessions of a Real Mommy, shown here nursing at Huntington Beach, California.

7. Reject Advertising from Companies That Aren’t Who Code Compliant

“The primary purpose of the “WHO-CODE” is to protect mothers and babies from the highly effective, aggressive and predatory marketing of substitutes for breastfeeding (i.e. infant formula, bottles, artificial nipples).”

Google can help us promote breastfeeding and deter formula marketing by refusing to accept advertising contracts from companies that do not comply with the WHO Code.

8. Turn the Google Map Pegman into a Breastfeeding Pegwoman

google breastfeeding pegwoman

Google Maps is the most popular “travel website,” ranked over Mapquest and Expedia. Maybe that is because visiting Google Maps can be fun.

Who doesn’t love the little Pegman on Google Maps?! Pegman has dressed up as Santa, a a panda, an astronaut, and more.

Why not replace Pegman with Pegwoman for awhile? She’ll proudly NIP all over the two dimensional globe.

9. Feature a Breastfeeding Video on the Front Page of YouTube

Rather than plugging the next hit movie, feature breastfeeding videos on YouTube’s front page during World Breastfeeding Week. Let some of YouTube’s 800 million monthly viewers see the biological norm in nourishing our little ones.

How You Can Help!

Would you love to see Google helping us normalize breastfeeding? To get these ideas on Google’s radar, send an email to proposals {at} google.com. Here’s a sample email adapted from one at Hygeia:

Dear Google,

We, the breastfeeding support and promotion community, would be delighted to have Google help us normalize breastfeeding throughout the world. World Breastfeeding Week takes place from August 1 – 7, 2012, and Dionna at Code Name: Mama has brainstormed several ways Google can join the celebration:


  • Feature a Google Doodle Honoring Breastfeeding – Be sure to check out some suggested doodles created by Joni Rae at Tales of a Kitchen Witch!
  • Include the Searcher’s State Law on Breastfeeding on Every Search Result
  • Offer Free Advertising Space to Breastfeeding Organizations
  • List One of the Many Reasons to Breastfeed in Gmail’s Sponsored Links
  • Add World Breastfeeding Week to the Holidays on Google Calendar
  • Put a Breastfeeding Pair in Street Views
  • Reject Advertising from Companies That Aren’t Who Code Compliant
  • Turn the Google Map Pegman into a Breastfeeding Pegwoman
  • Feature a Breastfeeding Video on the Front Page of YouTube
  • World Breastfeeding Week is celebrated every year in over 176 countries around the world, and this year marks the 20th anniversary. We would love to have Google be a vital part of this milestone.

    Thank you for considering this proposal.



    1. Joni Rae made all three of the Doodle ideas as well as the Pegwoman. My hubby, Tom, created the fake Google street view and Calendar image. The Gmail image and plain Jane black & white jobs are my contributions.

22 Responses to:
"9 Ways Google Can Help Us Normalize Breastfeeding"

  1. Melissa   VibrantWanderer

    Love it! Great ideas, Dionna, and the illustrations are fantastic. I just sent my email!

  2. Amy   Amy_willa

    LOVE. What a great idea! Now. . . will Google receive our request for help? :)

  3. Angela

    Love the Google doodle! These are ALL wonderful ideas. I really hope Google does some of these, especailly the doodle!

  4. Christina   naturalnewborn

    Wonderful ideas, and DONE!!

  5. Love the idea and love the doodle!

  6. Katie

    i’d sign the petition!

  7. eve

    Wonderful idea – I sent my email, and at least one other friend did too. I will see if I can drum up some more…

  8. Spring

    Also this site and google could advertise the big latch on? Know what it is? During bf awareness week it is world wide breast feeding event. This will be 3 rd in us.

  9. Audrey

    Love the google doodle! :)

  10. I think it’s a fabulous idea, and Google is a very BF friendly company to work for. They have policies against using people’s faces in the street view photos though, and I think they only use their photos. I think if you want breast feeding in street view, we will need to run out when we see the car driving up.

  11. Tara   Wolf_Mommy

    Fantastic. I have sent my email!

  12. Love it!!!! I’m looking at googles front page and just can’t find an email adress to send my petition, can you give me some help please???

    • Dionna   CodeNameMama

      Hey Mariana,I am on my phone, but if you look toward the end of the post,I put the email address in there. Thanks for helping!

  13. Karen at MomAgain@40   karentoittoit

    Excellent Dionna!! Love all these ideas! Especially the Google doodle!

  14. I love the breastfeeding Pegwoman!

  15. Ursula Ciller   ursula_ciller

    This are brilliant ideas and ones that will reach millions of people. I’ll be sending my email shortly.

  16. I support this initiative to raise awareness!
    i have just sent the mail to google proposals!

    God Bless!

  17. Karen at MomAgain@40   karentoittoit

    Linked back here as well! I think it is such good ideas: http://momagain40.blogspot.com/2012/03/keep-breastfeeding-on.html

  18. Les @ LPN Programs

    Looks like this got lost somewhere, sharing my two cents again.

    Email sent!

    Wonderful ideas that you have here, Dionna. Love the artwork by jonarae too. Posted it, together with a link to this blog, in Facebook.

    I recently gave birth and enjoying the benefits of exclusive breastfeeding. Hopefully we’ll hear from Google on this one. In our country, breastfeeding is starting to gain some support with malls now having breastfeeding stations (not sure if this is due to some law requirement).

  19. I love these ideas.

  20. Lauren @ Hobo Mama   Hobo_Mama

    I love these ideas! That doodle is brilliant.

  21. Whitney P.

    Just sent an email!

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