Yet Another Person, Upset With Search Result Snippets, Sues Yahoo

from the sue-the-algorithm dept

This is certainly not the first time we've seen cases like this, but reader LM alerts us to a case down in Australia, where a guy is upset that the Yahoo search results on his name make him look like a criminal. So, he's now suing the company for defamation. Similar cases in the US and the UK have been tossed out, with courts properly recognizing that you can't blame a search engine company for "defamation" because its algorithms summarize other people's content in confusing ways. However, a ruling on a similar case in the Netherlands went the other way. Already, in Australia, the court has refused to grant summary judgment to Yahoo, so a full trial will soon be underway to take on this issue, but Australian courts apparently often look to similar UK rulings for guidance -- so last year's ruling, finding that automatically generated summary snippets in search engines were not defamatory, hopefully is a good sign.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    cc (profile), Jun 24th, 2010 @ 2:42pm

    No no.. he's doing it wrong. He should be suing the criminal for trademark infringement!

     

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

  2.  
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    Nastybutler77 (profile), Jun 24th, 2010 @ 2:56pm

    Yahoo? Who searches Yahoo?

    This is a case where the Striesand Effect will do some real damage. No one would have ever known about this guy, or his criminal linkage on Yahoo since so few people even use Yahoo's search, and how many of them would be "Yahooing" this guy's name?

     

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  3.  
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    interval (profile), Jun 24th, 2010 @ 3:54pm

    Re: Yahoo? Who searches Yahoo?

    That's what I'm talking about. Yahoo is so 90's.

     

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

  4.  
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    The Devil's Coachman (profile), Jun 24th, 2010 @ 4:12pm

    What do we know about this person?

    I mean, it's not likely that he is a closet pedophile, but it's not entirely outside the realm of possibility. Sounds like he may or may not have something he wishes to hide. I wonder what that might be. Perhaps a thorough investigation into his past is called for, as well as his present and any and all future activities. These days, one cannot be too sure, and as a consequence, one cannot be too safe. I say that a detective should be put on his case, just in case he might be doing something particularly nasty, like openly practicing bestiality, or indulging in deviant sex with alien mutants from other galaxies. This man frightens me! He might be the disease vector that makes humanity extinct as a result of his alien mutant sexual procivities. Or, he may just be a paranoid, yet harmless dolt. The pubic demands to know. Stop hiding facts!

     

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

  5.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Jun 24th, 2010 @ 5:54pm

    Re: What do we know about this person?

    hey "deviant sex with alien mutants from other galaxies" is fun as long as they are not to gelatinous or acidic ... ;)

     

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

  6.  
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    Dave Miller (profile), Jun 24th, 2010 @ 7:01pm

    Why not write a book?

    Rather than sit around whining and suing people, why not do like Wes Moore and write a book about it?

     

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

  7.  
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    IronM@sk, Jun 24th, 2010 @ 8:35pm

    Re: Re: What do we know about this person?

    I would have thought gelatinous would be the way to go... mmm like warm apple pie.

     

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

  8.  
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    Bengie, Jun 24th, 2010 @ 8:43pm

    Re: Re: Yahoo? Who searches Yahoo?

    Yahoo? You mean Altavista.

     

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

  9.  
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    TtfnJohn (profile), Jun 25th, 2010 @ 9:14am

    FYI

    Aussie courts probably do the same thing that Canadian, British, Kiwi, and other legal systems based on English common and criminal law do and look for precedence in those systems as well. (Even US courts do this, btw.)

    Either or any way that will work this guy is outta luck!

     

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

  10.  
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    DanVan (profile), Jun 27th, 2010 @ 12:35pm

    I do feel bad for people like this. Things of this nature that have NO FOUNDATION (again, that is IF this person is in fact not guilty of anything) do hurt people applying for jobs, etc....

    I guess I have a bit of a personal interest as I myself look quite bad if you do a search for my name but thankfully everyone at work knows that it is NOT ME on the searches and I already have a job

     

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


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