Google Not Liable For 'Defamatory' Search Result Snippets In The UK

from the good-ruling dept

For many years there have been legal disputes over the way that Google shows a short "snippet" of a page in its search results. Some have charged that the results themselves may be libelous. In fact, in a bizarre recent Dutch court ruling, the site that such a snippet linked to was found liable, even though the problem was the way Google's algorithm constructed the snippet. So... of course, there are lawsuits against Google for its snippets as well. However, some good news out of the UK, as a court has found that Google should not be liable for search result snippets even if the content of the snippet is defamatory. The judge seems to clearly recognize that Google is just a search engine, and blaming it as if it were the publisher of such content makes no sense at all.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    icon
    Neo-Leper (profile), Jul 17th, 2009 @ 8:48pm

    I think if I get in an accident, say a drunk driver hits me, then since the town/city/state provide the roads I should sue the town/city/state.

    That makes as much sense as suing Google or any other search engine for search results that catalog something that they did not create or even like or agree with. What next, suing God because a wild animal attacks a human and causes injury?

    In my opinion we live in a society of wimps and idiots!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 19th, 2009 @ 12:37am

    Re:

    "What next, suing God because a wild animal attacks a human and causes injury?" Way to bring god into an otherwise good eaxmple.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 21st, 2009 @ 1:20pm

    If I were Google, I would simply drop anyone who complains about the search results from the index. They can get their traffic somewhere else. (I expect that they would soon come crawling back after realizing that a large portion of their traffic had just disappeared...)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
A word from our sponsors...
Essential Reading
Techdirt Reading List
Techdirt Insider Chat
A word from our sponsors...
Recent Stories
A word from our sponsors...

Close

Email This