“Ghetto Tracker” before the site was renamed and then taken down.

We interrupt our regularly scheduled news day to bring you one of those Internet-only to-dos that flare up now and then. Apparently there was a site called “Ghetto Tracker,” which was renamed, after much criticism, “Good Part of Town,” and has now been taken offline with this message from the founder:

“This site is gone. It’s not worth the trouble.”

Gawker had this to say about the site… is just as deplorable as its name suggests. The website, which surfaced yesterday on Hacker News and PandoDaily, invites users to rate neighborhoods based on “which parts of town are safe and which ones are ghetto, or unsafe.” Unsafe to whom? Well, the gleaming white family on its “About” page, of course.

GhettoTracker’s “ghettos” aren’t identified based on mugging statistics or murder rates—or any hard data at all, really. Instead, “ghettos” are determined by the site’s users and delineated by their prejudices. It’s a new, crowd-sourced twist on stop-and-frisk: Just drop a little red dot anywhere you think upstanding folks should stop-and-avoid.

We were trying to find out which Bay Area neighborhoods had been pegged not “The Good Part of Town” when the site went down.

Anyway, before going offline, the creator of the site explained himself this way in a post:

I have seen people jump on the bandwagon, make assumptions, and write articles about how this site is meant to help white people avoid minorities or help rich people avoid poor people. This assertion is laughable considering I am a minority who is so far from rich I would classify myself as poor.

I am a regular guy who started a website with the intentions of helping people stay safe. Nothing more and nothing less.

Twitter, naturally, has had a field day. Just a couple …


You can read the Gawker’s correspondence with the site’s creator here.

And more on the controversy from The Week and Pando Daily.

‘Ghetto Tracker’ Has Gone Offline 4 September,2013Jon Brooks

  • fire lion

    Why is this bad? people should be able to avoid high crime and nasty areas.

    • heidiannej

      i’m wondering the same thing, fire lion – I had no idea that it makes you a rich white person to want to know the details that only the locals know about the safety of a given area…

      • itsjustme_

        The safety of an area should be determined by actual data, not biased opinions…

    • skitter

      It wasn’t based on crime, it was based purely on user perception. In NYC had a lot of people tell me I lived in a “ghetto” because they were uncomfortable with my primarily hispanic neighborhood, but our crime rate was almost nonexistent. The one or two murders a year (if that) were usually turned into a Law & Order episode, it was that rare.

    • nycee

      It would be a nice idea if it was based on data rather than biased opinions.

  • chaloner

    Because Mexicans and blacks consider this racist lol. Seriously look at all the ghetto places nearly all are Mexican neighborhoods and blacks. That’s not racist it’s just a pure fact.

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