In Milan, Italy, Google has lost a case which was started against them by an Italian businessman who was ‘suggested’ to be a fraud or conman when searchers looked for his company name in Google.
The autocomplete function from Google suggested that the company they were looking for was truffatore (“con man”) and truffa (“fraud”).
Google tried to “get out” of the claim by stating they are a hosting provider. That way they would be falling under the protection of the E-Commerce Directive’s safe harbour provisions. That protects hosting providers from claims like this. The court however felt the autocomplete function has nothing to do with hosting and was a production from Google. (more…)