20 February 2009

A case against Google Street Map? Or a case of DIY?

Many avid followers and readers of CyberPanda have complained about the lack of posts recently. So after a period of (unwanted and involuntary!) silence due to having only 12 hours in a day (how is a doctoral student suppose to stumble on a good idea with only 12 hours in a day!!), CyberPanda is back and will try to maintain more regular posts!

Some breaking news all the way from the Silicon Valley, where the US Courts have dismissed a case against Google Street View. The Plaintiffs sued Google Street View on various grounds including breach privacy and tresspass, following the publication of photos of their home by the mapping program. The Courts took the view that the Plaintiffs did not successfully prove their case in this instance. A factor that weighed heavily against the Plaintiffs was the fact that they did not take advantage of the self-help remedy that was available to them, namely, removing the photos from Google Street View. This is an interesting ruling which seems to judicial endorse the use of technological measures (as removal tools) as self-help measures for the protection of privacy interests in cyberspace. Hence it may be the case that net users will not have actionable causes of actions if they fail to use available self-help remedies. It would be interesting to see what the position would have been, had the Claimants availed themselves of the self-help remedy and still claimed damages for invasion of privacy.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Glad to see that cyberpanda is back with a vengeance. Thanks for the recent update.