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Damien's Blog

Blow to Google and Online Privacy | Google Forced to Expose Blogger

By Damien Patton, (245 words) Posted in Corporate on August 19, 2009
There are (61) comments permalink

Yesterday, Google was ordered by a New York Supreme Court judge to provide the name of an anonymous blogger who used a Google supported blog. It started when a blogger posted some disparaging remarks about a Vogue model, Liskula Cohen. Ms. Cohen sued to have the name of the blogger released so that she could potentially file a slander suit against the blogger. The outcome, the judge sided with Ms. Cohen and has ordered Google to release the identity of the blogger.

Based on Google's comments after the ruling, it doesn't appear that they are going to appeal the decision. This ruling could have tremendous implications for online privacy in the future. Those who currently post online with an anonymous name should be careful in what they are putting out over the internet. Where once everyone thought they were protected, we are now seeing that for one blogger this might not be the case.

Before everyone blogging goes into a panic, this is just one case and we don't know the full ramifications yet. I am sure those bloggers that want to remain hidden are already taking measures of masking their IP address and true identity.

I am sure many in the online world will be following the outcome of this ruling and discussing it for a long time to come. Here is a link to one of the articles that goes into depth on the case, the ruling, and the statements from the involved parties.

bit.ly/Ts76

Icon: author blog About the Author:
Damien is the Founder and CEO of FindAnyFloor.com as well as several other technolgy businesses specializing in social media and search.
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Comments (61)

Bren Parks posted on: August 26, 2009

Privacy is one thing, but it isn't right to hurt someone by slandering them on a web page! Along with a right to blog, comes great responsibility! A very good write up about a relevant issue!

Andrew posted on: September 1, 2009

I think if you are going to be ballsy enough to talk sh1t about someone online, then you better be man enough to take the heat if or when it comes and not be a whiny little baby.

Privacy is one thing, but when you cross the line and encroach on someone else's rights then your privacy becomes null and void.

David Brugge posted on: September 2, 2009

I've always had a problem with total anonymous postings. Our founding fathers knew the danger of being unable to defend yourself against unnamed assailants. They made the right to face an accuser a key civil right.
Remember the famous psychological experiment where people who's identity was hidden inflicted shocks of a much higher degree to the test subject than those who's identity was known.
How many chat rooms have been made dysfunctional by the bully cloaked in secrecy.
Oh sure, I may wish that I could find a place where I could freely talk about my love of kiddie porn and how I worship Satin or plan to assassinate a high ranking figure, but society is full of compromises.
I also wish that I could get on a plane without being searched.
Anonymity is a good thing, but only for those that act responsibly.

Jane Timmons posted on: September 2, 2009

I agree with everyone here to an extent, but who decides what is too far. Should public figures give up their rights to be ridiculed. We see it all the time online. It doesnt affect me one way or another as I want people to see what I have to say, but I can see where this could be dangerous. Did Google even fight this court ruling?

Kenny Moran posted on: September 3, 2009

Really? Nobody here understands the right to privacy?

Slander and Libel are irrelevant in the face of our rights. Taking away privacy is only a form of implicit censorship.

dreadful posted on: October 28, 2009

David, you worship satin?

Mike posted on: November 20, 2009

Libel and slander laws only apply when you can prove harm to your reputation or income. Some nobody's opinion on a blog does not constitute either necessarily.

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