Google reportedly fined $22.5M for bypassing Safari privacy settings

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  • Reply 61 of 68
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,467member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post





    Sure. Do you have any idea how much the Cornell, Harvard, Stanford, etc libraries spend on books every year?

    Harvard, for example, spends $19 M per year on book and periodical purchases.

    http://hul.harvard.edu/publications/ar0607/files/ar07.hul.statistics.pdf

    Isn't it obvious that they'd prefer to be able to get all of those books without paying the publishers and authors? That's hardly justification for stealing copyrighted works.


    Then that plainly must be the answer. Simple Ivy League theft, thumbing their high and mighty noses at the law. Colluding with libraries throughout the US and overseas to steal books. It certainly couldn't be that you might be wrong and lack understanding of the arguments the EFF is making in support of the HathiTrust Digital Library's book scanning efforts, fair use and existing copyright law. 

  • Reply 62 of 68
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,697member
    gatorguy wrote: »
    Then that plainly must be the answer. Simple Ivy League theft, thumbing their high and mighty noses at the law. Colluding with libraries throughout the US and overseas to steal books. It certainly couldn't be that [SIZE=14px]you[/SIZE] might be wrong and lack understanding of the arguments the EFF is making in support of the HathiTrust Digital Library's book scanning efforts, fair use and existing copyright law. 

    Nope, it's just another case where GG is completely wrong and where his "sources" aren't at all relevant to the issue.

    But, even if we assume there is some circumstance where "fair use" might allow the copying of an entire book, let alone thousands of them (there is no such case, but for the sake of argument), that still wouldn't allow Google to invoke "fair use" to justify its illegal Google Books program because Google was making copies for commercial purposes. Even if they gave the books away (1 copyright violation per download), even if they didn't directly sell ads associated with them, it's still for commercial purposes given the nature of Google's business.

    To review:

    1. Google Books - Google acts as thought they are above the law
    2. Street View - Google does home invasion, steals personal data, lies to regulators, lies to regulators again.
    3. Net neutrality - Google pays lip service to net neutrality for years, then, when it's to their benefit, conspires with Verizon to destroy it.
    4. Patents - Bases their entire business on patents they have an exclusive license to, then argues that patents are bad.
    5. Safari Cookies - Google lies to consumers, violates their privacy, gets caught, promises (consent decree) not to do it again, does it again anyway.

    and so on...

    There is no possible way to trust this company. Google has consistently lied, cheated, stolen. They have shown themselves to be the basest hypocrites with no respect for the law, no respect for privacy, no respect for their own word and no respect for consumers.
  • Reply 63 of 68

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post





    Bull crap! Google had to write code to do this. Such code isn't an accident.


    Actually, the idea that this was an accident on Google's part isn't that far-fetched. Read the article again, and pay close attention to Google's explanation of what happened. Google added +1 buttons to their ads, and Safari suddenly got confused about whether those ads were ads or like buttons. Safari suddenly stopped blocking cookies from Google ads, and Google got blamed for it. Google probably tested the update on all major browsers before they released it to be sure it worked properly, but I'm guessing they didn't bother to check how the update would affect optional browser-specific features, like Safari's cookie blocking feature. As soon as they heard about the problem they released a patch and fixed it; I don't see what all the fuss is about. I guess I can't blame you for being suspicious though.

  • Reply 64 of 68

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by auxio View Post


     


    If he looked in his cache and searched for all of the doubleclick cookies created at times when he didn't interact with an ad at all (likely all of them), then determined how many websites he visited in each browsing session after those cookies were created (using his history), then determined the market value of selling that browsing information to advertisers, it would give a rough estimate of how much Google profited off him without his consent.



    Maybe, but does that really count as 'harm' to you? Can you prove that Google having that information harmed you in any way? That is a rather interesting question.

  • Reply 65 of 68
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,697member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Andrew Meyer View Post


    Actually, the idea that this was an accident on Google's part isn't that far-fetched. Read the article again, and pay close attention to Google's explanation of what happened. Google added +1 buttons to their ads, and Safari suddenly got confused about whether those ads were ads or like buttons. Safari suddenly stopped blocking cookies from Google ads, and Google got blamed for it. Google probably tested the update on all major browsers before they released it to be sure it worked properly, but I'm guessing they didn't bother to check how the update would affect optional browser-specific features, like Safari's cookie blocking feature. As soon as they heard about the problem they released a patch and fixed it; I don't see what all the fuss is about. I guess I can't blame you for being suspicious though.



     


    Given that Google's explanation that everything wrong they get caught doing is that it was "inadvertent", it's not a believable excuse, even if they are able to concoct a plausible scenario to explain it away. It wasn't inadvertent. They behave like an alcoholic who always has an excuse for why he screwed up and why it wasn't his fault.


     


    Next, Google will be arguing that the illegal copying of books in the Google Books program was inadvertent: "Some of our developers, contractors in fact, unbeknownst to us, were experimenting with what would happen if you ran books through a scanner and digitized them. Apparently, they left the scanners on and it filled up our databases with copyrighted materials. It was entirely inadvertent."

  • Reply 66 of 68
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    Maybe, but does that really count as 'harm' to you? Can you prove that Google having that information harmed you in any way? That is a rather interesting question.

    Actually, it's not such an interesting question. For some actions, it's not necessary to prove harm - the mere fact that the event occurred is sufficient.

    More importantly, even if any one individual can not show harm, it's still easy to argue that Google's misuse of private information harms all of us.
  • Reply 67 of 68

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post


     


    Given that Google's explanation that everything wrong they get caught doing is that it was "inadvertent", it's not a believable excuse, even if they are able to concoct a plausible scenario to explain it away. It wasn't inadvertent. They behave like an alcoholic who always has an excuse for why he screwed up and why it wasn't his fault.


     


    Next, Google will be arguing that the illegal copying of books in the Google Books program was inadvertent: "Some of our developers, contractors in fact, unbeknownst to us, were experimenting with what would happen if you ran books through a scanner and digitized them. Apparently, they left the scanners on and it filled up our databases with copyrighted materials. It was entirely inadvertent."



    I can't say for sure what's going on with Google Books right now, as I haven't been following that story. But as for the Safari incident, Google did not "concoct" that excuse. The technical part of it is a verifiable fact. Now, they may or may not have been lying about whether they knew that their code messed up Safari's cookie blocking; but I don't really see a motive for them doing something like that intentionally; especially when they themselves offer an opt-out feature that does effectively the same thing on both their website and on Chrome. And of course, they would have also been aware of the potential for their plan to backfire, which hardly seems worth the risk considering how easy was for them to be discovered. All in all, in this particular case it seems pretty obvious to me that this was unintentional.

  • Reply 68 of 68

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post





    Actually, it's not such an interesting question. For some actions, it's not necessary to prove harm - the mere fact that the event occurred is sufficient.

    More importantly, even if any one individual can not show harm, it's still easy to argue that Google's misuse of private information harms all of us.


    I meant that from a legal perspective. I'm certainly no lawyer (so I could be mistaken), but don't you have to prove that you suffered monetary damage in order to be successful in a class-action lawsuit?

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