Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Mohammad Ali Hosseini condemned Google's use of “Arabian Gulf” in lieu of “Persian Gulf” in their popular Google Earth software. Hossini called Google’s action a “desperate attempt to falsify historical facts.”
The controversial change has since evoked strong negative reactions across Iran and among the Iranian expatriate communities. In 2004, the National Geographic Society used Arabian Gulf in its World Atlas. Following huge protests by Iranians, it was changed back to Persian Gulf in later editions.