Googles privacy issues in Japan

Posted in Fun, News by whuup on May 13, 2009

japanstreetviewHaha, they have to do it all over! Thousands of streets in Japan have to be photographed by Google Streetview.. again. Google said Wednesday it will reshoot all Japanese pictures for its online Street View mapping service. It will lower the cameras on its vehicles by 40 centimetres after complaints in Japan that the cameras were capturing images over fences in private residences.. why did no one thought of that before??

Well, we think Google just wants to use the photo data to get insight of the little Japanese citizens. What are they doing in their back yards? Well, who knows. Fact is that Google HAS the photos in their database, ‘backupped’ it over and over again. So much for privacy in Gameboyland.

Google to publishers: We’re not evil or illegal

Posted in Fun by astromanic on April 7, 2009

A day after the editor of The Wall Street Journal referred to online news aggregators–particularly Google and its Google News product–as “parasites or tech tapeworms,” and the chairman of the Associated Press announced an initiative to protect print media content from infringing use online, Google has fired back in a blog.google_china_6

The gist of Tuesday’s blog post, penned by Google associate general counsel Alexander Macgillivray: don’t point fingers at us.

“We show snippets and links under the doctrine of fair use enshrined in the United States Copyright Act,” he wrote. “Even though the Copyright Act does not grant a copyright owner a veto over such uses, it is our policy to allow any rightsholder, in this case newspaper or wire service, to remove their content from our index–all they have to do is ask us or implement simple technical standards.”

As for the AP, Macgillivray noted that Google already pays the wire service to reprint its articles and photographs. A dispute several years ago led to this agreement.

Of course, Google News is far from the only aggregator out there. Digg, Drudge Report, and the Huffington Post are also big players. But Google is unquestionably at the top.

For the past few years, as many mainstream media outlets (particularly on the print side) began to lose revenue, influence, and readership, some of them had a pretty clear message: blame Google. At the same time, Viacom still has a billion-dollar lawsuit against Google’s YouTube over pirated video content. And much of the publishing industry is far from signing on to Google’s book digitization initiative.

With struggling newspapers in a panic over whether offering content online for free might not have been such a good idea in the first place, Google–the ultimate source of free content–is an even easier target.

But Google says it’s part of the solution, not the problem, and insists that its search and aggregation products only serve to help drive traffic to online news sites.

“Users like me are sent from different Google sites to newspaper websites at a rate of more than a billion clicks per month,” Macgillivray said in his post. “These clicks go to news publishers large and small, domestic and international–day and night.”

( Cnet )

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