Sunday, September 27, 2009

Google Ordered to Cancel User's Gmail Account

Tags: google

In my opinion, Google has the right to deactivate Gmail accounts for whatever reasons they like. It's a free country and with it being their service, Google can choose to alienate users by deactivating accounts if it so chooses. However, when a court orders Google to not only deactivate a user's account but to also disclose that user's information when the user has broken no laws whatsoever, well, then we've got a problem on our hands.

The user in question did nothing except receive an email that was accidentally sent to him. Sure, that email contained some highly sensitive financial documents, but it was the sender's fault not the recipient.

There's really not too much else to say about this. Anybody with any grasp of common sense should be able to see the huge problems with this court ruling. Basically, I could send some important documents to any Web account and get that account deactivated and the personal details revealed to me. That could include not only email accounts, but social networking accounts like Facebook and Myspace (they have their own messaging systems that can send and receive so-called "sensitive information").

Let's hope some sort of appeal will overturn this ugly ruling. Let's also wish for District Court Judge James Ware to find himself quickly out of work due to his lack of sanity in his rulings.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Google Ordered to Give Viacom All Video and User Data for YouTube

Tags: google, lawsuit, viacom, youtube

Another day, another court case furthers a dangerous precedent when it comes to who's responsible for misconduct on the Web. Last time it was eBay that was dealt the blow when they were held accountable for it's users selling items illegally. This time Google takes a hit as a US judge ordered the Web giant to turn over significant amounts of YouTube user data to Viacom to help determine whether or not Google's YouTube is profitting more off copyrighted materials than user uploaded clips.

The data Google is to hand over includes records of every video watched by YouTube users along with logs that include various user data (such as IP address and viewing histories). Google must also hand over copies of all videos it has ever taken down. Viacom did ask for more, such as YouTube's source code and copies of all private videos, but the judge threw those requests out.

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