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Sunday, January 15, 2012

Google's Autocomplete Feature Defamed Organization

A French court has ruled against Google's autocomplete service, which might have accidentally defamed one of the French insurance companies.

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The latest court case appeared to be both funny and worrying for the international search giant. When the users tapped in the name of the French insurance company Lyonnaise de Garantie, they get the word “escroc”, which is translated from French as “crook”, appearing. As you can understand, if the users did that too often, they would begin associating the world “crook” with the company Lyonnaise de Garantie, and that is something that business wouldn’t want.

After the insurance company took the search giant to court, the press revealed that the judge took the side of Lyonnaise de Garantie and ruled against the search engine’s autocomplete feature. As a result, the company was fined $65,000, but this amount of money is, of course, roughly nothing to the international giant. In response, Google had argued that it wasn’t really responsible for what happened, because the word was added under Google Suggest, which was obviously the result of some automatic algorithm and therefore couldn’t come from human thought.

Nevertheless, the Judge pointed out that that the search engine was asked a few times to tackle the issue but it did nothing in this regard. That’s why aside from the imposed fine, the service is also demanded to delete the term from the search results associated with Lyonnaise de Garantie. This court decision can cause some trouble for the search giant in Europe. The matter is that there are quite a few individuals and organizations out there that may also have suggestions for their names that could be considered defamatory

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