Google: Continuing to hide behind self-serve policing

It’s not your job. It’s not my job. Nor is it anyone’s job.

A story out yesterday has a column on a Pennsylvania couple suing Google for images of their property displayed on Street View.

http://www.boston.com/business/technology/articles/2008/04/05/google_sued_over_street_view/

Google’s response, per usual, from Larry Yu:

“There’s no merit to this action,” Google spokesman Larry Yu said. “It is unfortunate litigation was chosen to address the concern because we have visible tools, such as a YouTube video, to help people learn about imagery removal and an easy-to-use process to facilitate image removal.”

Further, Yu comments, “Google has links on the website that let property owners request that such images be removed if they cite a good reason and can confirm they own the property depicted.”

This is a classic effort level issue. Is it an individual’s role to police their privacy online….which takes time, even if 5 minutes to do.

And more, what’s “good reason.” Isn’t this an individual by individual basis? And if, in this case, I own the property why do I need to defend by privacy vs. Google. I don’t even need to do this for the U.S. government. 

Google has remarkable currency from their “Don’t be evil” branding campaign. It’s time for them to either live up to it or, perhaps, for the government to regulate some of their practices.

I hope this story gets more press and is written about fairly online with all views.

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