Google is denying reports that detailed maps for Georgia and the other countries of the Caucasus on Google Maps disappeared as a result of the conflict between Georgia and Russia. The data was never there in the first place; they were simply three of several countries for which detailed maps are not available via Google. Google says that
we never launched coverage in those countries because we simply weren’t satisfied with the map data we had available. We’re constantly searching for the best map data we can find, and sometimes will delay launching coverage in a country if we think we can get more comprehensive data.
However, they’re changing that position:
We’re hearing from our users that they would rather see even very basic coverage of a country than see nothing at all. That certainly makes sense, and so we have started preparing data for the handful of countries that are still blank on Google Maps. Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, as well as other significant regions of the world will benefit from this effort.
It’s not just the Caucasus — Argentina and South Korea are still largely blank.