UK Privacy Activist Claims Google Maps Is Illegal

from the oh-come-on dept

We've seen some silly claims about Google Maps/Google Earth lately, and they just keep coming. The latest is that a privacy activist in the UK is going to issue a legal challenge against Google's Street View offering in the UK, claiming that the photos violate peoples' privacy. Note: these are all photos of people in public places. The UK government has apparently given the go-ahead for Street View in the UK, but this guy is going to challenge that ruling, claiming that Google needs to get prior consent from everyone in the photos before using them. He's not at all satisfied that Google allows the blurring of faces and the ability to take down photos you really dislike. It doesn't sound like this legal challenge will go very far. The guy isn't even sure what law he's going to accuse Google of breaking, and the lawyers quoted in the article seem quite skeptical that there's anything illegal about the Street View product.
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Filed Under: google maps, privacy, street view, uk


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  1. identicon
    Alan Gerow, 20 Mar 2009 @ 11:23am

    Yet, in London, as soon as you drive into the city, your license place is photographed and run through image processors to find out who you are. The moment you enter the city the government has you on camera until you leave. They monitor 24/7/365, and want to expand their camera network. This is fine with people, but getting caught on camera once a couple months ago when they were standing in front of a place being photographed is a major problem that will ruin the world.

    I trust private companies with that information infinitely more than I would ever trust a bureaucrat or police officer. Google wants to show people where things are ... the government wants to show people the inside of a jail cage. Or at least throw fines at them so they can justify the cost of putting up all those cameras in the first place.

    Google has done more to protect my privacy than anyone else. They were the only US search engine that denied the federal government access to its logs without a court order, when Yahoo & Microsoft gave their logs upon a polite request. True, Google used the excuse that it would expose trade secrets, but they stood up to the government and its unreasonable expectations and demands.

    I trust Google to know about me. I don't trust politicians to know about me.

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