Tag Archives: Google

Not Just Google and Yahoo! Harvesting Webmail Contacts Lists Also the NSA

As two class actions are pending for violation of the Federal Wire Tap Act against Google and Yahoo! for harvesting contact lists, now it appears that NSA has also been harvesting “hundreds of millions of contact lists from personal e-mail and instant messaging accounts around the world, many of them belonging to Americans.” According to a … Continue reading this entry

Free Webmail May be Coming to an End as Yahoo! is Sued for Scanning eMails

In the wake of the Google class action for scanning gmail and violating the Federal Wiretap Act, a new class action suit was filed against Yahoo! for “…unlawful, wrongful, and intentional reading and/or learning of the contents.” The class action was filed by John Kevranian and Tammy Zapata on behalf of Yahoo! email users on … Continue reading this entry

Google to be Fined for Failing to Comply with EU Privacy Laws

Google told the EU that the EU Privacy Laws did not apply to Google’s services and the EU now plans to impose a sanction for “breaches of the French Data Protection Act of 6 January 1978, as amended (French Data Protection Act) which, in practice, prevents individuals from knowing how their personal data may be … Continue reading this entry

Court Rules that Google Should NOT Have Collected wifi Data

Google collected unprotected wifi data while taking Street View pictures between 2007 and 2010, and paid $7 million fine to the FTC. In a class action lawsuit on appeal Google claimed that it did nothing wrong and Computerworld reported Google’s argued: …that its data collection did not violate the Wiretap Act because it fell under … Continue reading this entry

Google Defends Scanning of Gmail for Advertising

A class action against Google claims that Google violated laws by scanning Gmail notwithstanding the Terms of Service that expressly allows Google to scan Gmail. The allegations in this class action includes the following: …claim that the automated processing of email in Google’s Gmail service violates the Federal Wiretap Act, as amended by the Electronic … Continue reading this entry

Google's $8.5 Million Proposed Settlement for Privacy Violations Opposed

Privacy groups oppose the current offer to settle a 2010 suit that “Google transmitted user search queries to third parties without knowledge or consent in order to enhance advertising revenue and profitability.” According to the 2010 complaint Google included: The search terms can contain users’ real names, street addresses, phone numbers, credit card numbers and … Continue reading this entry

Google Books Defeats Copyright Infringement Class Action

On July 1, 2013 the Authors Guild lost its bid to certify a class of authors against Google Books. The lawsuit was filed in 2005 claiming that the Google did not have the right to copy books from its Partners (publishers and authors) and Libraries including: Austrian National Library, Columbia University, Harvard University, New York … Continue reading this entry

EU Asserts Jurisdiction Over Google's Servers

Internet jurisdiction may have taken an interesting turn now that the EU asserted that servers outside the EU are subject to EU law. On June 25, 2013 Niilo Jaaskinen, the independent Advocate General of the European Court of Justice, issued an Opinion that the EU Data Protective Directive applies to search engines that contain data … Continue reading this entry

Google Ordered to Comply with French Privacy Law

In March 2012 Google changed its Privacy Policies much to the dissatisfaction of many countries in the EU, but in spite of the complaints Google has not changed its Privacy Policies. In October 2012 a letter was sent to Google demanding changes within 4 months by CNIL (Commission nationale de l’informatique et des libertés). Then … Continue reading this entry

Internet Wills for Digital Afterlife Now Available on Google

A new feature on Google called Interactive Account Manager now allows Google users to selected trusted contacts to receive data from many Google services. On April 11, 2013 posted a blog entitled “Plan your digital afterlife with Inactive Account Manager.” Amusingly enough Google admits the title for the new service “not a great name” but … Continue reading this entry

Google's Android Operating System Now Target of EU Antitrust Charges

FairSearch.org filed a complaint with the EU asserting that Google’s use of the Android operating system dominates the mobile marketplace and is anticompetitive. FairSearch states that it “is an international coalition of 17 specialized search and technology companies whose members include Expedia, Microsoft, Nokia, Oracle, and TripAdvisor.” In the complaint FairSearch states: Google is using … Continue reading this entry

Google Now Dealing with New EU Antitrust Complaint

Just as Google proposed a settlement with the EU, on January 30, 2013 i-Comp filed a new complaint of antitrust charges about which Bloomberg reported that Google’s “search results discriminate against competitors.” I-Comp is led by Microsoft and posted on its website:  By creating an illegal network of exclusive relationships with these important partners, Google … Continue reading this entry

How will the FTC Deal with the Internet with a New Chief?

FTC Chair Jon Liebowitz is resigning after 4 years during which he “pushed for online privacy protections and sought to restrain unfair competition,” but as the New York Times reported he “stumbled in an attempt to rein in the Internet search practices of Google”: Competitors, advertisers and some consumer advocates had complained that Google manipulated … Continue reading this entry

FTC Concludes that Google Does Not Violate Antitrust Laws

The FTC and Google reached a landmark agreement regarding allegations of antitrust behavior by Google regarding Google search engine. But also the settlement allows competitors of Google’s “on fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory terms – to patents on critical standardized technologies needed to make popular devices such as smart phones, laptop and tablet computers, and gaming … Continue reading this entry

Google US Antitrust Settlement, Not so Fast

Although in mid-December the Washington Post reported that there was an apparent antitrust settlement with Google and the FTC, Google reached out to me to let me know otherwise. Google sent me an email  with a link to former FTC Commissioner Orson Swindle’s article and a Forbes article which I reference below.  Google wanted me to … Continue reading this entry

US Antitrust Problems for Google May be Over

The Washington Post reported that the FTC and Google have reached a deal in the 2 year investigation about monopoly practices where Google “would agree to new limits on its ability to use snippets of content from other Web sites and would agree to make it easier for marketers to transfer their online ads to … Continue reading this entry

France and Germany Considering Google Tax on Searches

Yahoo recently reported stated that French President Francois Hollande wants a tax on Google, and other search engines each time they use French media content. Google has threatened to exclude French media websites from search results to avoid paying this new tax. Apparently the goal of the new tax would be to “reward French media … Continue reading this entry

Google's Antitrust Problems

Recent reports indicate that the US and EU antitrust regulators are considering filing suits against Google, but not for control over the search engine market, which clearly Google controls. Rather the antitrust claims will be directed at Google’s unfair competition by unfairly manipulating search results. Computerworld recently reported: …the suit might charge that Google manipulates … Continue reading this entry

EU Claims Google Violates Privacy Laws

The 27 heads of European data agencies complained that Google’s failed to respond adequately to charges that Google’s new Privacy Policy effective on March 1, 2012 violated the EU privacy laws which are referred to as the 1995 Data Directive  –“Directive 95/46/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 24 October 1995 on the protection … Continue reading this entry

New Privacy Concerns? Gmail Integrates with Google Search

Google announced a pilot test which allows Google to provide Gmail results in normal search queries, including this example: "So if you’re planning a biking trip to Tahoe, you might see relevant emails from friends about the best bike trails, or great places to eat on the right hand side of the results page." The … Continue reading this entry

Oops- Google Found Street View Wifi Data

Google confessed to U.K. officials that Google still has Street View unprotected wifi data collected before 2010 in spite claims that such data had been destroyed. On July 27, 2012 Peter Fleischer (Google’s global privacy counsel) sent a letter to Steve Eckersley (head of enforcement) at the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) and admitted the following: … Continue reading this entry

No Surprise - US Supreme Court Relies on Google

A law professor concluded that Justices on the Supreme Court regularly use Google since apparently Opinions issued by the Supreme Court cite facts never offered by the lawyers’ briefs. Professor Allison Orr Larsen (William & Mary Law School) studied 15 years of Supreme Court decisions and concluded that the Justices simply rely on Google. Professor’s … Continue reading this entry

Google Obliges Website Copyright Takedown Requests 97% of the Time

Google is getting high marks for its May 2012 Transparency Report that when copyright owners complain about website infringement, that Google takes down those website urls (universal resource locators) 97% of the time. Google claims the other 3% are not taken down because of inaccurate or incomplete information. In April 2012 1,255,402 url removal requests … Continue reading this entry