Google loses privacy case

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Zamfir
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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Zamfir » Fri May 16, 2014 5:26 pm UTC

This might cost Google effort, even money, sure. They publish stuff, they are responsible for what they publish. They don't get an exception just because they generate so much data automatically.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby cphite » Fri May 16, 2014 5:47 pm UTC

MartianInvader wrote:I remember reading somewhere that Google has like 90% of the search market in Europe, so pulling out would definitely be felt. But it would be felt by Google, too, as they make huge amounts of money by showing ads to people in these countries. All in all, it would probably be easier for the EU to replace Google than for Google to replace its ad dollars, but there's an aspect of "everybody loses" in that scenario. I don't think it's something either Google or the EU actually wants.


The thing is, if Google were to pull out of Spain or even the entire EU, the public reaction to that might be strong enough to make the government(s) bend on this. It really depends on whether the people, at large, care enough about the case to give up their favorite search engine.

Unless the rules get so crazy that Google's actually losing money by staying in the EU, in which case they, and probably most other search engines, would likely pull out. In that scenario, I guess Europeans would go back to using telephone books or something.


That's the thing... it really depends on how far this goes. It's one thing to say Google is required to remove that one specific link from it's database; quite another to say that Google has to remove all traces of that article from it's database. There are often many ways to find the same article - it could have been copied, for example, on news aggregation site. The original site could change the URL, which would cause it to be re-indexed by Google... Or someone could copy the article and re-post it in other places in a response to this case. Is Google required to track down all those other links in addition to the original?

Removing a specific link is relatively easy; being required to prevent an article from appearing no matter what is a bit more difficult.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Derek » Fri May 16, 2014 6:47 pm UTC

Zamfir wrote:This might cost Google effort, even money, sure. They publish stuff, they are responsible for what they publish. They don't get an exception just because they generate so much data automatically.

So Google is responsible for the content of the entire Internet?

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Zamfir » Fri May 16, 2014 7:11 pm UTC

No, Google is responsible for the pages that Google makes. Look at the links I posted: it's a central piece of the court case. The court decided that Google is (in this case) not just replicating other stuff. Unlike, for example, an ISP that just sends on pages.

Google does a significant amount of collecting, editing and formating, all of it under its own control and by its own rules. The court notes that this has significant impact
The court observes [...] that, without the search engine, the information could not have been interconnected or could have been only with great difficulty. Internet users may thereby establish a more or less detailed profile of the person searched against.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Derek » Fri May 16, 2014 7:27 pm UTC

Sorry, let me rephrase. So you believe that Google is responsible for the content of the portion of the internet that it indexes and returns in search results?

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby cphite » Fri May 16, 2014 7:50 pm UTC

Derek wrote:Sorry, let me rephrase. So you believe that Google is responsible for the content of the portion of the internet that it indexes and returns in search results?


Only if someone whines to the right judge...

Google uses various methods to rank search results... for example, when you're searching for a specific person in a specific region, court decisions about that person in that region are bumped up in the rankings. That is one of the main reasons people use Google; because it generally does a pretty good job of not only finding things, but finding things that are relevant to the person looking.

The argument is essentially that because Google makes it easier to find the article than, say, a search engine that simply indexes and returns the article randomly, that Google bears responsibility for "publishing" the content. I personally find that reasoning to be a load of hogwash, but the court bought it, and so here we are.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby elasto » Sat May 17, 2014 2:11 am UTC

Derek wrote:Sorry, let me rephrase. So you believe that Google is responsible for the content of the portion of the internet that it indexes and returns in search results?

It's not hard to understand: It's responsible for the results page it creates from thin air when a user makes a search. That page is a collation of information pre-existing on the web, yes, but most databases are; But that collation process is of value in and of itself because else why would anyone Google to begin with?

Europe has strong laws for companies that accrue, process, store and then pass on personal information. One of the laws allows people to demand that out-of-date and irrelevant information is removed. If Google were a simple 'dumb conduit' then it would have far less responsibility in this regard; A phone company does not have to 'filter' phone calls and text messages for out-of-date and irrelevant information because it simply relays what one person says to another.

But because Google is extremely smart and does a high amount of processing to filter and order the data, it gains responsibility for ensuring its filtering and ordering complies with European law, no different to any other company that processes and filters data.

The easiest way for it to comply with the law is the same way all other European companies manage to do without complaint: They allow people to request that out-of-date and irrelevant information be removed. In a sense, one of the filters a smart database has to have is a flag to say 'was this piece of information ruled out-of-date or irrelevant'? Google simply needs to have this flag/filter just like every other database does.

Google is not responsible for proactively determining ahead of time that a piece of information will be judged out-of-date or irrelevant - that would be insanely onerous - it merely needs to have a reactive process in place to accept or reject a request.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Derek » Sat May 17, 2014 2:49 am UTC

I'll take that as a "yes".

elasto wrote:The easiest way for it to comply with the law is the same way all other European companies manage to do without complaint: They allow people to request that out-of-date and irrelevant information be removed. In a sense, one of the filters a smart database has to have is a flag to say 'was this piece of information ruled out-of-date or irrelevant'? Google simply needs to have this flag/filter just like every other database does.

Would you care to link me to this European search engine that is compliant with these laws? Because I'm rather dubious that any company outside of China has such a procedure in place. It's not the technical challenge, removing arbitrary entries is easy, you're right, it's the design and legal challenge of removing entries while preventing abuse and still returning relevant results.

BTW, some more new "forget" requests:
-A man who tried to kill members of his own family who has asked for links to a news article to be taken down
-A celebrity's child who wanted links to news articles about a criminal conviction removed
-A suspended university lecturer who asked for the removal of links to articles mentioning the disciplinary action
-A convicted cyberstalker who, after being cited in an article about cyberstalking law, wants links to it taken down
-An actor who has asked for links to articles about an affair he had with a teenager taken down
-A man convicted of running a tax scam who wants all links referencing the event removed

Though I wish the BBC would say where they're getting these from.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Zamfir » Sat May 17, 2014 12:06 pm UTC

It's a not a law for search engines, it's a law for all companies that manage databases with collected personal information on people.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby elasto » Sun May 18, 2014 1:55 am UTC

Derek wrote:Would you care to link me to this European search engine that is compliant with these laws?

I guess you've misunderstood that the whole point of this ruling was to decide whether search engines need to comply with European directives on companies that have massive databases collecting, processing, storing and rebroadcasting personal information on request. The judges have ruled that what Google does is not different enough in kind so as to fall outside the scope of the law.

There are thousands of companies in compliance with these laws and this ruling will set a precedent for all search engines to join them; Google is not being singled out here.

And I don't get what the point is of listing people making requests that may or may not be valid. If people contact Credit Reference Agencies claiming that financial information held about them is irrelevant or out of date, noone would use examples of invalid requests to suggest that valid requests should not be permitted.
Last edited by elasto on Sun May 18, 2014 2:06 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby morriswalters » Sun May 18, 2014 2:01 am UTC

elasto wrote:The easiest way for it to comply with the law is the same way all other European companies manage to do without complaint: They allow people to request that out-of-date and irrelevant information be removed. In a sense, one of the filters a smart database has to have is a flag to say 'was this piece of information ruled out-of-date or irrelevant'? Google simply needs to have this flag/filter just like every other database does.
How many customers does the average company have as compared to Google? And how general is the data they have to censor under law? And is the newspapers archive subject to that law?

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby elasto » Sun May 18, 2014 2:17 am UTC

morriswalters wrote:How many customers does the average company have as compared to Google?

Huh? How much resources does the average company have compared to Google? It cuts both ways. Google was the world's second largest company by capitalization last I heard, only behind Apple.

Small companies generally find bureaucracy more burdensome than big companies do.

Besides, as far as I am aware, the law does not disallow Google from charging a proportionate fee to process removal requests - or if it does disallow it, I'm sure the law could be changed if Google was suddenly being broken under the weight of millions of requests (which is not going to happen).

If Google were to charge a flat fee of $5, say, then I don't think many would argue with that. Or if we want to disproportionately discourage frivolous requests, perhaps they could charge a $20 fee which is refunded if the request is judged by Google themselves or the arbitration panel to have merit under the law.

There are many ways to handle this. The sky is not falling.

And how general is the data they have to censor under law?

Extremely wide-ranging. Though they don't 'censor' it. They fix information which is agreed by all parties to be in error or no longer relevant. eg. if your credit reference said you failed to pay for a sofa even though in fact you returned it.

And is the newspapers archive subject to that law?

I would think not, because this law is not invoked through simple accrual of data; a crucial part of the law is the degree to which the company performs processing upon that data.

The law basically says: The more you process/order/filter the data you accrue, the more ownership you take of the results you go on to republish, and the more you need to ensure they comply with personal data protection considerations.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby MartianInvader » Sun May 18, 2014 3:21 pm UTC

There are special exceptions to the law for newspapers and other journalistic entities. Part of this ruling was that Google is not enough of a "journalistic entity" for these exceptions to apply. That's why the original paper didn't have to take down the notice but Google has to take down their link to it.
Let's have a fervent argument, mostly over semantics, where we all claim the burden of proof is on the other side!

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby morriswalters » Sun May 18, 2014 3:36 pm UTC

elasto wrote:There are many ways to handle this. The sky is not falling.
I don't think the sky is falling, that is Google's problem. I don't have much of an informed opinion at all.

The question about the number of customers was curiosity, informed by the idea of the magnitude of the problem.
elasto wrote:Though they don't 'censor' it. They fix information which is agreed by all parties to be in error or no longer relevant. eg. if your credit reference said you failed to pay for a sofa even though in fact you returned it.
The first thought that comes to mind is that Google doesn't have the data, it has a pointer to the data. Meta data. Unless of course Google is caching the page in question. And by the nature of the data in the specific court case to eliminate the pointer to that data would mean eliminating the pointer to the rest of the data encapsulated near it, if the pdf in this link contains the relevant document. Since the document is question is an image file of the type pdf, which I assume is searchable by Google than a search for any other part of the document will return the original. With the offending content still in place. Which I assume would be how most people would come to it, unless they were looking for the notice in question in the first place. Had they been looking for the notice they would have known that they had been published by newspapers as a matter of course and would be able to use the paper in questions search function.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Derek » Sun May 18, 2014 5:11 pm UTC

elasto wrote:
And how general is the data they have to censor under law?

Extremely wide-ranging. Though they don't 'censor' it. They fix information which is agreed by all parties to be in error or no longer relevant. eg. if your credit reference said you failed to pay for a sofa even though in fact you returned it.

This isn't about fixing incorrect information. I think everyone agrees you have some right to do that (probably under defamation laws), though properly this should be done at the source of the information. This is about removing true information. Removing or hiding true information, even if it's "no longer relevant", is not "fixing" anything, it is censorship.

And is the newspapers archive subject to that law?

I would think not, because this law is not invoked through simple accrual of data; a crucial part of the law is the degree to which the company performs processing upon that data.

The law basically says: The more you process/order/filter the data you accrue, the more ownership you take of the results you go on to republish, and the more you need to ensure they comply with personal data protection considerations.

Actually the law appears to cover all collection and organization of data, regardless of how much processing is done. A newspaper archive might get a pass for only searching their own content, but I wouldn't count on it until the inevitable court decision. To reference Zamfir's quote:
[the court finds] that by searching automatically, constantly and systematically for information published on the internet, the operator of a search engine ‘collects’ data within the meaning of the directive. The Court considers, furthermore, that the operator, within the framework of its indexing programmes, ‘retrieves’, ‘records’ and ‘organises’ the data in question, which it then ‘stores’ on its servers and, as the case may be, ‘discloses’ and ‘makes available’ to its users in the form of lists of results. Those operations, which are referred to expressly and unconditionally in the directive, must be classified as ‘processing’, regardless of the fact that the operator of the search engine carries them out without distinction in respect of information other than the personal data.

Note that there is no reference here to processing other than "organization", which refers to the ability to perform a search over the collected data, the fundamental purpose of a search engine. Therefore clearly all general purpose web search engines are affected, even the "dumb" ones, and a site-specific search engine, like a searchable newspaper archive, could easily qualify as well.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby morriswalters » Tue Jun 17, 2014 9:42 pm UTC

And now here come the Canadians. This from Micheal Geist through Slashdot.

In the aftermath of the European Court of Justice "right to be forgotten" decision, many asked whether a similar ruling could arise in Canada. While a privacy-related ruling has yet to hit Canada, last week the Supreme Court of British Columbia relied in part on the decision in issuing an unprecedented order requiring Google to remove websites from its global index. The ruling in Equustek Solutions Inc. v. Jack is unusual since its reach extends far beyond Canada. Rather than ordering the company to remove certain links from the search results available through Google.ca, the order intentionally targets the entire database, requiring the company to ensure that no one, anywhere in the world, can see the search results. Note that this differs from the European right to be forgotten ruling, which is limited to Europe.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Diadem » Wed Jun 18, 2014 8:04 am UTC

Huh. Guess Americans are not the only, eh, Americans who think their laws should be valid outside their own country.
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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Red Hal » Thu Jun 19, 2014 1:39 pm UTC

I really don't see what the problem is. As far as I can see this is swinging the scales of information ownership back a little towards the person to whom the information relates. Governments have been doing it for years, companies with deep pockets and corporate lawyers have too. All this is doing is backing up the individual and making the playing field a little less uneven. Google is still on the hill with the high ground on the right.
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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Chen » Thu Jun 19, 2014 3:01 pm UTC

Red Hal wrote:I really don't see what the problem is. As far as I can see this is swinging the scales of information ownership back a little towards the person to whom the information relates. Governments have been doing it for years, companies with deep pockets and corporate lawyers have too. All this is doing is backing up the individual and making the playing field a little less uneven. Google is still on the hill with the high ground on the right.


Information that was publicly available about me, isn't suddenly information that is mine to own. The fact that the indexing company needs to remove the links to the information, but the company who produced the article (in the first EU case) didn't, is absurd. It reduces the information available to everyone. People need to take responsibility for their past and deal with whatever actions occurred then. You made a spurious lawsuit 20 years ago and you don't want people knowing about it? Tough luck. I don't see why the public shouldn't have that information available to them now, if it was available back then.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Derek » Thu Jun 19, 2014 7:39 pm UTC

And remember that making information less accessible only benefits the wealthy. They have more money to spend hiding their own secrets and digging up dirt on others.

Also, a false sense of privacy is much worse than no privacy. If these regulations only create a false sense of privacy, not real privacy, then they will do far more harm than good.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby elasto » Fri Jun 20, 2014 1:13 am UTC

Chen wrote:Information that was publicly available about me, isn't suddenly information that is mine to own.

That's a viewpoint very common in the US. But realise that not everyone shares that viewpoint.

A viewpoint more common in Europe than in the US is that information about me in certain spheres (financial, medical, criminal (to an extent) etc.) still belongs to me no matter how public it becomes - just like a piece of music belongs to the production company that made it no matter how many times it gets spread on video sites and torrents.

You made a spurious lawsuit 20 years ago and you don't want people knowing about it? Tough luck. I don't see why the public shouldn't have that information available to them now, if it was available back then.


There are a handful of reasons why someone can legally seek to control information in the public domain: Some of them are trivial and (hopefully) uncontroversial - like if the information is a deliberate lie. Whether in the US or Europe, if there is information about you in the public domain that is a lie you can go to court to have the people repeating it stop doing so.

In Europe we have a reason that's not common in the US - that the information is out of date: information which was once in the public interest is now not so, but merely prejudicial - eg. if a person failed to make a credit card payment 20 years ago.

And remember that making information less accessible only benefits the wealthy. They have more money to spend hiding their own secrets and digging up dirt on others.


It's not true that it only benefits the wealthy. It benefits a poor person if another poor person can't invade his privacy - regardless of whether a rich person can or not.

Yes it's true that the wealthy can basically ignore these laws - but it was always so. A level playing field between the rich and the poor is impossible to achieve almost by definition - and so not achieving it is not a good reason to abandon an otherwise reasonable principle.

(A good reason to abandon it is the impracticality of achieving it - and that would be the basis for my disagreement with this ruling - but the law is often about principle and rarely about practicality.

Digital IP laws are impractical to enforce; The war against drugs is unwinnable; Laws trying to control how consenting adults have sex are inane; Trying to prevent people getting out of date information like the courts have done here is impractical; I think the law should be pragmatic on all these things but at least their heart is in the right place on this one)

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby morriswalters » Fri Jun 20, 2014 9:30 am UTC

The problem isn't that they want to remove outdated information. The problem is that data doesn't exist in isolation. If an article on a newspaper page is taken out of the index then every other article on the page is gone with it because any link to the page gives you what the court doesn't want you to see. But at least the confined the idea to their own borders. In the Canadian case, who asked them to tell me what I am allowed to see or not see. I'm not Canadian. Let them stick to what is their business, in their own country.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Mutex » Fri Jun 20, 2014 10:06 am UTC

morriswalters wrote:The problem isn't that they want to remove outdated information. The problem is that data doesn't exist in isolation. If an article on a newspaper page is taken out of the index then every other article on the page is gone with it because any link to the page gives you what the court doesn't want you to see. But at least the confined the idea to their own borders. In the Canadian case, who asked them to tell me what I am allowed to see or not see. I'm not Canadian. Let them stick to what is their business, in their own country.


Well, I can see the logic of the Canadian approach. If the goal of this is to stop potential employers from being able to dig up your past, and the rules only apply to the Google version for your particular country, then potential employers will just use google.com.

Also, I'm interested in how you think this will actually affect you? Are you planning to dig up the past of random Canadian citizens? I don't get this hostility to other people's desire for privacy.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby morriswalters » Fri Jun 20, 2014 11:52 am UTC

Mutex wrote:Also, I'm interested in how you think this will actually affect you? Are you planning to dig up the past of random Canadian citizens? I don't get this hostility to other people's desire for privacy.
I'm not hostile to their privacy. I'm hostile to the idea that Canadians can control what I see. I'm sorry that the world has different points of view. But I don't want the precedent of having a foreign court determining what can be said or seen in the US. So if China doesn't like a website maintained in the US that is critical of China, should a Chinese court be able to block all access to the site everywhere? Did you read the
to the article I posted?
Micheal Geist wrote:In the aftermath of the European Court of Justice "right to be forgotten" decision, many asked whether a similar ruling could arise in Canada. While a privacy-related ruling has yet to hit Canada, last week the Supreme Court of British Columbia relied in part on the decision in issuing an unprecedented order requiring Google to remove websites from its global index. The ruling in Equustek Solutions Inc. v. Jack is unusual since its reach extends far beyond Canada. Rather than ordering the company to remove certain links from the search results available through Google.ca, the order intentionally targets the entire database, requiring the company to ensure that no one, anywhere in the world, can see the search results. Note that this differs from the European right to be forgotten ruling, which is limited to Europe.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Mutex » Fri Jun 20, 2014 12:08 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:
Mutex wrote:Also, I'm interested in how you think this will actually affect you? Are you planning to dig up the past of random Canadian citizens? I don't get this hostility to other people's desire for privacy.


I'm not hostile to their privacy. I'm hostile to the idea that Canadians can control what I see. I'm sorry that the world has different points of view. But I don't want the precedent of having a foreign court determining what can be said or seen in the US. So if China doesn't like a website maintained in the US that is critical of China, should a Chinese court be able to block all access to the site everywhere? Did you read the
to the article I posted?

Micheal Geist wrote:In the aftermath of the European Court of Justice "right to be forgotten" decision, many asked whether a similar ruling could arise in Canada. While a privacy-related ruling has yet to hit Canada, last week the Supreme Court of British Columbia relied in part on the decision in issuing an unprecedented order requiring Google to remove websites from its global index. The ruling in Equustek Solutions Inc. v. Jack is unusual since its reach extends far beyond Canada. Rather than ordering the company to remove certain links from the search results available through Google.ca, the order intentionally targets the entire database, requiring the company to ensure that no one, anywhere in the world, can see the search results. Note that this differs from the European right to be forgotten ruling, which is limited to Europe.


I read it (my question about how it would affect you was because I don't see why you'd want to access the removed information anyway), this wouldn't be setting a precedent in the legal sense though. The situation will be the same as it is now. A country can place demands on a company that wants to be able to operate in their country. The company can decide whether to comply or just not bother doing business in that country.

The main issue with only removing stuff from the .ca site is that the .com site is available in Canada. Blocking access to the .com site in Canada wouldn't really work as you could just use a proxy. So whatever you think of the Canadian order, it's at least trying to actually achieve what it set out to do.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Chen » Fri Jun 20, 2014 12:12 pm UTC

elasto wrote:There are a handful of reasons why someone can legally seek to control information in the public domain: Some of them are trivial and (hopefully) uncontroversial - like if the information is a deliberate lie. Whether in the US or Europe, if there is information about you in the public domain that is a lie you can go to court to have the people repeating it stop doing so.


A deliberate lie is one thing, but in that case it wouldn't just be the index that would be removed, the entire article itself would be. And I have no issue with that.

In Europe we have a reason that's not common in the US - that the information is out of date: information which was once in the public interest is now not so, but merely prejudicial - eg. if a person failed to make a credit card payment 20 years ago.


For a single event I can perhaps see the reasoning. But removing multiple single events also removes any ability to show a pattern. Sure your company went bankrupt 20 years ago, fine. Hmm but wait, 10 years ago your next company also went bankrupt. And the one after that too? Well maybe I shouldn't go lending you money because you're clearly bad at running businesses. Remove the 20 year one and even the 10 year one and you've now made it unclear whether the last bankruptcy was an issue or not.

Letting people decide when information about them is of public interest or not seems kinda like a huge conflict of interest. Of course I'm going to want the prejudicial stuff removed, but I'll certainly keep all the accolades from my past. It's revisionist history on a personal level.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby morriswalters » Fri Jun 20, 2014 1:31 pm UTC

@Mutex
It has no effect on me at all. Neither does the snooping the NSA does. But I don't like it either. And that doesn't mean in either case that it won't be applied to something I do need or care about in the future. In the Canadian case I am sympathetic to what they want to accomplish, just not the way they want to do it. Illegal behavior on the part of some firm is a bad thing. But illegality is a funny thing. If a government chooses to do so it can make all manner of things illegal. So again I ask, if criticizing Chinese politicians on a website in the US bugs the Chinese Hierarchy, do they have a right to shut it down at the Source? In this case the US, given that the behavior is illegal in China. I don't care if Canada wants to limit access to the outside world because it is less than a pleasant place. I do want them to do it to their own citizens and not me.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Mutex » Fri Jun 20, 2014 1:43 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:@Mutex
It has no effect on me at all. Neither does the snooping the NSA does. But I don't like it either. And that doesn't mean in either case that it won't be applied to something I do need or care about in the future. In the Canadian case I am sympathetic to what they want to accomplish, just not the way they want to do it. Illegal behavior on the part of some firm is a bad thing. But illegality is a funny thing. If a government chooses to do so it can make all manner of things illegal. So again I ask, if criticizing Chinese politicians on a website in the US bugs the Chinese Hierarchy, do they have a right to shut it down at the Source? In this case the US, given that the behavior is illegal in China. I don't care if Canada wants to limit access to the outside world because it is less than a pleasant place. I do want them to do it to their own citizens and not me.


I thought I answered the bolded question, sorry I'll be clearer. The Chinese government don't have the right to remove a website from Google's index, just like the EU don't have the right to remove records about particular people's past who have requested it be removed. They do have the right to prevent Google from being able to do business in their country. So Google can decide if it wants to comply, or give up on that country. And yeah, I don't like the idea of that happening either, but that is already the way things are. So it's not really an argument against Canadian citizens being able to have records about their past removed from Google's global index, the one doesn't make the other more likely.

It would be better if this could be implemented in a way that only affects the index Canadians can access and not everyone else, but I don't see any way of actually achieving that.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby morriswalters » Fri Jun 20, 2014 2:58 pm UTC

What I think would be amusing about this, would be for Google to comply. If it does, and if the ruling stands, those Chinese sites will be unfindable soon after because the Courts in China will issue those edicts to Google as quickly as they can. And why not. If a provincial Canadian court can do it and make it stick than why not every government with an axe to grind.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Derek » Fri Jun 20, 2014 10:22 pm UTC

Mutex wrote:Also, I'm interested in how you think this will actually affect you? Are you planning to dig up the past of random Canadian citizens? I don't get this hostility to other people's desire for privacy.

How does the NSA's snooping affect you? Are you hiding something, are you working with the terrorists? I don't get this hostility to the surveillance of other people.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby LaserGuy » Sat Jun 21, 2014 3:50 am UTC

morriswalters wrote:@Mutex
It has no effect on me at all. Neither does the snooping the NSA does. But I don't like it either. And that doesn't mean in either case that it won't be applied to something I do need or care about in the future. In the Canadian case I am sympathetic to what they want to accomplish, just not the way they want to do it. Illegal behavior on the part of some firm is a bad thing. But illegality is a funny thing. If a government chooses to do so it can make all manner of things illegal. So again I ask, if criticizing Chinese politicians on a website in the US bugs the Chinese Hierarchy, do they have a right to shut it down at the Source? In this case the US, given that the behavior is illegal in China. I don't care if Canada wants to limit access to the outside world because it is less than a pleasant place. I do want them to do it to their own citizens and not me.


American laws apply to all kinds of other countries around the world, whether they like it or not. Canadian content can get slapped with DMCA notices and struck down from Google, even if they are doing perfectly legal activity in Canada. How is this any different?

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Derek » Sat Jun 21, 2014 6:46 am UTC

LaserGuy wrote:American laws apply to all kinds of other countries around the world, whether they like it or not. Canadian content can get slapped with DMCA notices and struck down from Google, even if they are doing perfectly legal activity in Canada. How is this any different?

The DMCA is just the implementation of an international treaty that Canada is also a party to. So there is some Canadian law that has more or less the same effect as the DMCA, and you would technically be slapped with that instead of a DMCA (though most people would probably still call it a DMCA anyways).

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby morriswalters » Sat Jun 21, 2014 10:41 am UTC

LaserGuy wrote:American laws apply to all kinds of other countries around the world, whether they like it or not. Canadian content can get slapped with DMCA notices and struck down from Google, even if they are doing perfectly legal activity in Canada. How is this any different?
No. Countries around the world act within a framework of Treaties and understandings. But that isn't an absolute. Countries are sovereign. I don't have a problem with the company at the heart of this business acting in the courts in the US to stop the behavior that has them in a twist. But if you follow the courts logic to its conclusion, the outcome is obvious. You will see exactly what governments want you to see. Chinese courts for instance could make what they consider slander of party leaders unlawful, and then act through local courts in China to make Google censor content in the US that they felt was detrimental.(I use China only as an example because dissidents makes use of the protection given to them by American law) Certainly they could attempt to do this through coercion in any case. But blackmail is one thing, the force of law another. And two wrongs don't make bad behavior good. The US does any number of things around the world that make me wonder at times if my pride of country is misplaced. That doesn't make this situation anything other than what it is. The European case was different in that, what they said, as dumb as I thought it was, was applicable only to Europeans.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby LaserGuy » Sat Jun 21, 2014 1:41 pm UTC

Derek wrote:
LaserGuy wrote:American laws apply to all kinds of other countries around the world, whether they like it or not. Canadian content can get slapped with DMCA notices and struck down from Google, even if they are doing perfectly legal activity in Canada. How is this any different?


The DMCA is just the implementation of an international treaty that Canada is also a party to. So there is some Canadian law that has more or less the same effect as the DMCA, and you would technically be slapped with that instead of a DMCA (though most people would probably still call it a DMCA anyways).


The Canadian case is a patent infringement case. The US is presumably party to the same treaties as Canada in this regard.

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Crissa
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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Crissa » Sun Jun 22, 2014 3:50 am UTC

What I want to know is, how much money is Google supposed to spend to figure out the disposition of these people's petitions? How id Google supposed to know a proper request from one that's not? And what if the source they're pointing to changes their URL and Google re-indexes it? How often will Google have to check that?

I know they have a version of a court order, but it just seems to me it's going to be a tool of the rich and not the poor, and be a club to hit new indexing services with - they won't have the database of exceptions to go by.

Whether people have the right or not, it seems the search engine is the wrong place to go about it.

-Crissa

PS, the Canadian case is interesting: It's pretty clear that the defendant company is violating the law in more jurisdictions than their own. So the court order could be reviewed in another court (say in California) and upheld. But how? That's a good question.

This is much like saying someone is violating the law in two states, but only got caught in one state. In the US, states are supposed to (but don't always) respect each other's court orders. Internationally, there is some methods of reciprocal accepting of court orders, but it's still lossy as not all laws match up.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Mutex » Mon Jun 23, 2014 8:03 am UTC

Derek wrote:
Mutex wrote:Also, I'm interested in how you think this will actually affect you? Are you planning to dig up the past of random Canadian citizens? I don't get this hostility to other people's desire for privacy.

How does the NSA's snooping affect you? Are you hiding something, are you working with the terrorists? I don't get this hostility to the surveillance of other people.


I'm not sure if that was even meant to make sense.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Derek » Wed Jul 02, 2014 7:16 pm UTC

It looks like the take downs are going into effect. Google is notifying websites when they're pages are removed from searches. BBC, The Guardian.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Chen » Wed Jul 02, 2014 7:26 pm UTC

Derek wrote:It looks like the take downs are going into effect. Google is notifying websites when they're pages are removed from searches. BBC, The Guardian.


Gotta love making information harder to find. Seems like a referee who is dishonest could be useful information for someone wanting to hire one. Not sure how that's not relevant to the public.

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Crissa » Thu Jul 03, 2014 9:55 am UTC

I'm hoping the publishers will continue pointing out which articles have been pulled - refreshing the names that have been redacted from our collective memory back into it.

So far, I've heard about CEOs and investment bankers, how about you? CEO Stan O'Neal was forced to resign from Merrill Lynch in 2007 after allowing a disastrous series of investments.

-Crissa

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Re: Google loses privacy case

Postby Chen » Tue Jul 15, 2014 6:54 pm UTC

Well some people are working around it.

http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-28311217

I'm not sure how this would in terms of the legal decision. There's no way for Google to remove all references ever to the original page that was asked to be removed. Hell even the articles talking about how the page was removed start showing up on the hits now. So it seems if you want to hide your history now, not only will you fail at it, you'll also get hits showing how you tried to hide your history. As a solution to the stupid ruling, I kinda like this.


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