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Google Italy bosses found guilty

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posted on Feb, 24 2010 @ 05:47 AM

Google Italy bosses found guilty

An Italian court has convicted three Google executives in a trial over a video showing a teenager with Down's Syndrome being bullied.

The Google employees were accused of breaking Italian law by allowing the video to be posted online.

Judge Oscar Magi absolved the three of defamation but convicted them of privacy violations.

The three received suspended six-month sentences, while a fourth defendant was acquitted.
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Feb, 24 2010 @ 05:47 AM
This is a potentially very worrying situation that will have massive repercussions for the world wide web.

Google supplied the information of the boys responsible for uploading the video and for me that is where there responsibility should end - to fully police the internet would simply be impossible. For example there would be nothing to stop someone uploading a long boring seminar on the benefits of tin foil hats and at various points within the video edit in extreme sexual or violent content - would Google be responsible for this type of video guerrilla activity?

Hopefully common sense will prevail and this conviction is overturned or our ability to make full use of the internet will become choked until it passes out.

Opinions please?


(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Feb, 24 2010 @ 06:47 AM
Google's Official Reply

In late 2006, students at a school in Turin, Italy filmed and then uploaded a video to Google Video that showed them bullying an autistic schoolmate. The video was totally reprehensible and we took it down within hours of being notified by the Italian police.


...public prosecutor in Milan decided to indict four Google employees —David Drummond, Arvind Desikan, Peter Fleischer and George Reyes (who left the company in 2008). The charges brought against them were criminal defamation and a failure to comply with the Italian privacy code.


...a judge in Milan today convicted 3 of the 4 defendants — David Drummond, Peter Fleischer and George Reyes — for failure to comply with the Italian privacy code. All 4 were found not guilty of criminal defamation. In essence this ruling means that employees of hosting platforms like Google Video are criminally responsible for content that users upload.


It attacks the very principles of freedom on which the Internet is built.

posted on Feb, 24 2010 @ 06:48 AM
I feel sorry for the teenager being bullied in front of a world wide audience, but really Google shouldn't be put on trail for this, even the boys uploading the video have done nothing illegal. Now the problem is finding inappropriate material and either censoring it or deleting it after all, hell it's even a big deal to classify such as inappropriate, doing so would go against the free speech of the internet, wouldn't it?!

posted on Feb, 24 2010 @ 07:23 AM
This is worrying. Last month, the Italian government pushed a regulation that required video hosting websites to own a license for video hosting, a license issued by the Ministry of Communication. Yup, they have one...
Italy has the least level of free press in Western Europe. It's not against Google, it's against the internet.

Italy To Require Anyone Who Uploads Video To The Internet To Obtain Government Authorization
Italian regulator criticises proposed Internet bill

posted on Feb, 24 2010 @ 09:45 AM
The internet is under attack plain and simple. Couple this with a case from Florida, where a man from California who produced and sold pornography through his website was tried and convicted on 10 violations of federal obscenity laws. The community he was tried in has very strict anti-pornography laws. None of the movies were in any way related to Tampa other than the ability for one to access the website and download or view the material. He is now serving a 46 month sentence in federal prison.

If these rulings continue, the internet will become the most politically correct source of information, making it completely useless. The whole thing will have to be shut down, as you will be hard-pressed to find anything that exists that does not offend someone.

posted on Feb, 24 2010 @ 07:12 PM
I wouldn't put much stock in this in terms of impacting Internet content. Berlusconi is an imbecile and he's made it clear that he doesn't want any interference with his media empire. Italy can pretend to intimidate those around her with goofball rulings such as this one but honestly, nobody cares. It's unfortunate that his attacker back in December didn't use something an anvil to smash out more of his teeth.


posted on Feb, 25 2010 @ 03:18 AM
Well, i'd like to point out that this has been a decision by an intalian Court, and not just expression of the will of italian gov.t , because BOTH political sides in Italy would like to put the internet under control (because both sides have somethig to hide, but this is not the case), Courts are supposed to be independent though: the Boy's parent withdrew legal action because of Google's good behavior after the event, so it's just a political trial disguised as some matter of privacy allegedly violated: and yes it's very concerning, because it didn't just happen in Italy, it happened everywhere in Europe, now more courts could feel free to touch buttons that before they could'nt.
It's also very surprising because there's no straight mention in italian jurisprudence of the possibility to charge them of anything: it's like to find guilty the toll motorway owner because one gets drunk while driving there and crashes, or like to charge some Postal Service because someone sent you some threat or some bomb via their service.
Actually, there are laws that ban any form of censorship, since right after fascist era (it works for everyone but Berlusconi though): now this judge, Oscar Magi from Milan, has 40 days to explain the reasons of his very strange decision: for what it's worth, MSM and people in Italy are agreeing that this is and attack on freedom of web.
The problem is that there's a clear will to limit as much as possible the freedom, thi is just the last step towards that direction:
recently a Decree was delivered to the Chamber of Deputies (on December 18, 2009):
the Decree basically reads that there shouldn't be differences between an ISP hosting third parties media and some TV station: go figure the consequences of such a law in case the decree would be promoted (but it will go to nowhere:
this piece of art came from the right wing, and before we had the Levi-Prodi decree, coming from left : (.pdf file, 79,7 Kb) -DDL - NUOVA DISCIPLINA DELL’EDITORIA E DELEGA AL GOVERNO PER L’EMANAZIONE DI UN TESTO UNICO SUL RIORDINO DELLA LEGISLAZIONE NEL SETTORE EDITORIALE : this last one (going to nowhere as well) was even funnier, basically it planned to put publishing industry and bloggers (and everything else there's between the two) at the same level, with, registration fees, taxes and all the rest

To introduce some random drug tests at the gates of italian parliament, wouldn't hurt at all imo.
Thanks for sharing

posted on Feb, 25 2010 @ 05:16 AM
Once again we have progressive Europe taking away rights from it's people. It is a shame you guys bought into this crap. They are trying to pull it here in the US to but we are to strong and they know it. The Europeans should once again look west to see the salvation. Because if you look to the east kiss your freedoms goodbye. We will lead the way again just you watch.

posted on Feb, 25 2010 @ 05:25 AM
reply to post by badBERTHA

G'day badBERTHA

On the one hand.....this very worrying for the future of free expression & free speech on the internet.

On the other hand.....I think this will eventually be dismissed on appeal.

Kind regards
Maybe...maybe not

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