An appeals court in Argentina has ruled that search engines are not responsible for the content of sites that they index. The court overturned a lower court's ruling against Google and Yahoo! Argentina. A lower court had found the search firms liable for damaging the 'moral character' of Virginia Da Cunha, a model, singer and …
What, more so than by posting pictures of her posing provocatively in underwear? Begs the question really, doesn't it?
Quite right too. How could a ruling be otherwise - ever? Ludicrous to suggest search engines should be the slightest bit responsible for ultimate link content and how could anyone expect that the likes of Google or Yahoo would even be able to police all the links they throw up. Madness!
I've got a better idea
If anyone tries to sue a search engine because they don't like the results they get when searching for their own name, just block their name entirely. If anyone searches for that person they'd just get a page explaining that the person they searched for doesn't want them to do that. See how this alleged model feels when suddenly no-one can find her agents website.
..and just suppose there just happens to be two people on this planet with the same name?
4/10 Must try harder.
When they complain just point them at the person who brought the court case and say 'it's all their fault, speak to them.'
... most countries rely on precedents set in previous legal cases, at least to some extent. So someone was always going to try this. It's a win-win situation for the lawyer - if he wins the case (which was never going to happen) then he's in on the ground floor of some *very* good business, and if he loses then it's his name which will forever be quoted as the case which set the precedent. And either way he gets paid.
Less useful for da Cunha, who's wasted a load of money. Still, it's probably a better way of wasting it than hoovering marching powder up her nose.
Considered jusgements better than hurried local court rulings
This is a good ruling as the senior courts are more immune to local pressures.
Search engines simply make on-line material easier to research as opposed to generating the original material. They serve the same purpose as indexes and directories ... based on paper.
Most likely not precedent...
Latinamerican countries follow Roman rather than Common Law, which means that precedent is irrelevant. It all boils down to whether you explicitly "qualify" under the description set forth in the law. People are still bound to try to stretch the definition of words to be able to sue though. At the same time... see how different the money award is from what you'd get in the US. This has nothing to do with exchange rate. It's only here that the courts have allowed themselves to be the whores of the trial lawyers when it comes to assigning a dollar value to something; ridiculous.