Uluru "removed" from Google Street View

Uluru, the sandstone rock formation in Australia also known as Ayers Rock, is to be removed from Google Street View this week at the request of the Australian government.

The formation, one of the continent's most famous natural landmarks, is sacred to indigenous Australians such as the Pitjantjatjara, to which ownership of the site was returned in 1985. Public access was cut off last year.

The images to be removed—as of posting time they are still accessible, with Google saying it may take some time to update—are user-submitted 360-degree views which allow visitors to Google Maps to virtually explore the monument on "foot".

Views from the surrounding landscape and satellites are not implicated by the request. Other popular mapping services, such as Bing, do not offer "street"-level views from Uluru.