Google heading for row with UK lawmakers

Posted on April 11, 2012


Last week saw what many people thought of as a rather incredulous statement by Google, as it claimed it was not responsible for monitoring content placed online.

Strictly speaking of course, this is perfectly true as it is certainly not their role to police the internet. However, by their own algorithm, they do monitor it. That is, essentially, what their core business model is for all things search.

The statement was made in response to a cross-party committee report calling for all search engines and major internet platforms to introduce algorithms which removed links that were clearly in breach of privacy laws.

“Google and other search engines should take steps to ensure that their websites are not used as vehicles to breach the law and should actively develop and use such technology.”

The call itself was a direct response to Max Moseley’s complaint about issues he faced having a video removed from the internet.

In the former F1 impresario’s case, the same video kept on cropping up but it follows many high profile cases where the privacy of individuals, not just those in the public eye, has been breached online.

Google’s response, directed through the BBC, left many speechless, including those working in SEO:

“Requiring search engines to screen the content of their web pages would be like asking phone companies to listen in on every call made across their networks for potentially suspicious activity.”

To many people, the statement simply does not make sense and it is likely something the lawmakers of the country will ask to be clarified soon.


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