Google’s Fight for Our Online Privacy

“It is almost universally felt that when we call a country democratic we are praising it; consequently, the defenders of every kind of regime claim that it is a democracy, and fear that they might have to stop using the word if it were tied down to any one meaning.”
-George Orwell

I gotta hand it to Google for taking on the Justice Department. If you don’t know what’s going on, the federal government has subpoenaed search results from the major search engines — MSN, Yahoo! and Google — in order to aid in a futile attempt to revive an online child protection law that has been ruled unconstitutional by the US Supreme Court. Yahoo! and MSN have already handed over their search records but Google is fighting.

Google’s argument is that 1) handing over the search records is an invasion of their users’ privacy and 2) handing over their search records will give away trade secrets that give Google a competitive advantage in the search market among other things.

I think the fact that MSN and Yahoo! have already handed over this paperwork is an egregious assault on online privacy. Sadly, the door to online privacy violation has already been left wide open so closing this door will be even more difficult.

Luckily Google has the resources to take this to court. They have a date set for a court hearing before US District Judge James Ware in San Jose. The date is March 13.

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