Outrageous: French Court Convicts Eric Schmidt Of Defamation Over Google Suggestions

Google is Skynet

A French court has convicted both Google and its CEO Eric Schmidt of defamation as a result of searches offered up by Google Suggest, the AFP reports.

As shown in the image here, Google Suggest predicts what you’re searching for based on what you’ve already typed, so you can scroll down to your search rather than finish typing a long search string.

In this case, a man convicted of corruption of a minor found that typing his name into a Google search box brought up suggestions including the words ‘rapist’ and ‘Satanist’. The court concluded that this constituted defamation, slapped Google with a symbolic one euro fine, and ordered it to take measures to ensure this couldn’t happen again.

This is absurd. Google’s suggestions are determined algorithmically, and a quick look at the suggestions in the image included here should make it clear that Google isn’t endorsing any claims implied by those suggestions.

Google says it plans to appeal the verdict.

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