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Google Employees Stand Trial in Italy for Video

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 5 comments
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Four Google employees today stood trial in Milan for allegedly breaking Italian law.

David Carl Drummond, head of Google Italy's managing board; George De Los Reyes, a board member; Peter Fleitcher, in charge of privacy protection in Europe; and Arvind Desikan, head of videos for Europe stood trial in Milan, Italy on charges of criminal defamation and violation of privacy.

The case is a result of a video uploaded to Google’s Video service in 2006. Showing several teenage boys teases a boy with Down's Syndrome, the video remained online for nearly two months before it was removed. Despite the fact that Google removed the video within 24 hours of receiving a request to have it taken down, advocacy groups claim the video should never have been posted to the site at all and in allowing it to appear online, Google violated the boy’s privacy.

Google argues that its cooperation led to the bullies being punished and likens the case to someone blaming the mailman for delivering hate mail. The search giant said seeking to hold neutral platforms liable for content posted on them is a direct attack on a free, open Internet.

The BBC reports that a Google engineer today took the stand to give evidence that aimed to prove Google had not committed any crime.

The trial has been subjected to several delays. Scheduled to begin on February 4, proceedings were then delayed until February 18. Parties were supposed to appear in court again in June but proceedings were delayed until September because a translator was ill. If the four men are convicted, the case could change the way sites like YouTube operate

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  • 1 Hide
    LePhuronn , 1 October 2009 07:21
    "the video should never have been posted to the site at all"

    And how the hell do you propose to actually do that? How about you think before opening your mouth, and if you're not capable of understanding the concept of internet and how people upload then consult somebody who does before making such bullshit statements.

    Saying the video should never have been posted is like saying the Downs kid's parents' should never had easily-mutatable DNA in the first place.
  • 1 Hide
    Scott2009 , 1 October 2009 12:35
    The people who committed the crime were the bullies, not the medium (be it vibrations in the air, or a digitised varient).

    It was 'published' by the user account, not the medium(s).

    They just want a free hand out from a large company with money.

    Instead they should sue the 'poor' (financially) bullies.

    Or someone should offer a service to 'offer justice' (for a fee of course).
  • 1 Hide
    tinnerdxp , 1 October 2009 17:30
    same bullshit as usual these days... yeah let's sue Microsoft because the video has been submitted using a windows PC... people for fuck sake - learn that internet should never be "controlled" in any way... let people decide whether they want to visit a page or not! Suing anybody will not help here at all.
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  • 1 Hide
    devilxc , 2 October 2009 16:30
    Liberties should NOT be taken away to ensure that people "do the right thing". It should be a choice.

    Those people who act morally should be respected and those who don't should be dealt with appropriately. It should never be the medium that takes the blame.
  • 0 Hide
    sgtmattbaker , 10 October 2009 22:55
    "same bullshit as usual these days... yeah let's sue Microsoft because the video has been submitted using a windows PC... people for fuck sake - learn that internet should never be "controlled" in any way... let people decide whether they want to visit a page or not! Suing anybody will not help here at all." Exactly.

    Oh yeah, screw Italy.