Company Continues To Insist That Google Is Responsible For Libel On Any Site It Links To

from the sorry,-but,-no dept

Can a day go by without a story about a ridiculous lawsuit against Google? The latest is really more of an update of a case we wrote about a few years ago, where the company Dotworlds sent us their own press release, claiming that they were suing Google for linking to sites that contained libel (according to Dotworlds) against it. That, of course, was ridiculous, since Google is not the responsible party at all, and simply provides a search engine. We pointed that out in our post about it, and the folks from Dotworlds responded using an emotional, rather than legal, argument basically saying that it's too much work to figure out who was actually responsible, so why shouldn't they take the easy path and sue Google? The company is apparently now suing Google in the UK, since the UK's libel laws are a lot stricter. So it's entirely possible that a judge will find that Google somehow is liable for the content on others' pages. The head of Dotworlds claims that Google is liable here because he's informed it of the libelous statements -- but that doesn't change the simple fact that Google is not the one publishing those statements. Blaming Google for finding libelous statements is blaming the tool, not whoever is actually responsible. It may be easier, but that doesn't mean it's right.

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Jul 2007 @ 12:57pm

    oh dear

    "(random business) sucks" search controversy is a laugh and a half.

    There's a TechDirt repost on Addict3d (http://tinyurl.com/2qwtxh) with a single comment made by dotWORLDS. Some bizarre denigration of Google having no use, or whatever. Isn't that something that they themselves seem to be suiting up over?

    They also signed up in June on Google's own Blogger service, posting only two things and leaving it.
    http://dotworlds.blogspot.com/2007/06/why-does-google-publish-libel.html
    and
    http://dotworlds .blogspot.com/2007/06/to-google-verb-meaning-to-seach.html

    Same day, in that order. On Google's own blog service, they condemn Google (a matter of poor taste) and then announce their own private service using Google's name, apparently with the justification of Google being a genericized trademark (VERY poor taste, and with questionable legality).

    Were things this petty before the dotcom boom and bust, or was I not paying attention back then?

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