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Japanese Court Orders Google To Turn Off Auto-Complete Function

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the why-is-japan-so dept.

Google 236

An anonymous reader writes with news that a Tokyo District Court has granted its approval to a petition seeking to force Google to turn off the auto-complete feature for its search engine. "The petition against Google was filed by a Japanese man who claims the feature breached his privacy and eventually led to the loss of his job. According to the man, whose name has been withheld, when his name is typed into the Google search engine auto-complete suggests words associated with criminal behavior. And when those suggested searches are clicked, over 10,000 results are shown that disparage or defame him. According to the plaintiff, this negative Google footprint has prevented him from finding employment since his initial firing several years ago." Unfortunately for him, "Google has rejected the order, saying that its U.S. headquarters will not be regulated by Japanese law, and that the case, according to its in-house privacy policy, does not warrant deleting autocomplete-suggested terms related to the petition, lawyer Hiroyuki Tomita said Sunday."

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What goes around comes around (0, Troll)

MasterMan (2603851) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477489)

Google has rejected the order, saying that its U.S. headquarters will not be regulated by Japanese law, and that the case, according its in-house privacy policy, does not warrant deleting autocomplete-suggested terms related to the petition, lawyer Hiroyuki Tomita said Sunday.

So why was Hong Kong based company MegaUpload regulated by U.S. laws? Exactly.

It's time to shut down Google.

Re:What goes around comes around (5, Informative)

chill (34294) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477535)

Because the servers that were seized were in Virginia?

Re:What goes around comes around (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477565)

I'm sure Google doesn't have any data centers in japan.

Re:What goes around comes around (5, Informative)

SJHillman (1966756) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477607)

Re:What goes around comes around (5, Informative)

MasterMan (2603851) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477715)

Not datacenter, but they have local offices, which is even more substantial. They have corporate presence in the country.

Re:What goes around comes around (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477799)

Arrest the regional executives. Then Google will change their tune.

I don't agree with the ruling, but that's how these things go down when a company refuses to recognize jurisdiction in a country they have an operational presence in.

Re:What goes around comes around (5, Insightful)

NewWorldDan (899800) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478005)

They have .jp domain names that could potentially be siezed. That would be highly disruptive. I'm sure that they also have assets in Japanese banks and do business inside the country. In short, they have plenty of assets under the jurisdiction of Japanese courts should they fail to comply with the court's order. Not being an expert on the local laws of Japan, I can't tell you how relevant the location of the physical server is, but I'd bet it's not that important to the case at hand.

Re:What goes around comes around (1, Flamebait)

Talonius (97106) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477619)

Woah, woah, we have no place for your logical thinking here. Get out, heretic!

Re:What goes around comes around (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477545)

Non-sense, get real.

The Parent is a TROLL. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477707)

Troll.

Re:The Parent is a TROLL. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39478065)

Or maybe it was a sarcastic comment about how US has been acting lately?

Re:What goes around comes around (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477755)

While I don't understand "It's time to shut down Google.", it will be interesting over the next decades to see what happens to U.S. policy and laws once foreign companies (e.g., Chinese tech.) start to use U.S. laws and their own newly-important country's clout to bludgeon American corporations the way the U.S. gov't. and corporations do now.

Re:What goes around comes around (1)

jythie (914043) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477973)

Because the US is the defaco ruler of the internet.. enough of it is hosted here, or requires name resolution through US services, that as far as the DoJ is concerned it has domain over the whole thing. So unless Japan asks the DoJ nicely to do mean things to a US company... it is unlikely to have an impact.

Instant is next (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477537)

Great, now can we get a restraining order on the Live search feature too? It's giving me mental anguish

Re:Instant is next (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477709)

So much mental anguish that you can't just turn it off if it annoys you that much?

Re:Instant is next (3, Insightful)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477983)

That would be nice if there was a magical Google fairy that followed me around and disabled it on every machine I touched pre-emptively and didn't require me to log in to random machines.

Everyone, start discussin this article!!! (0)

For a Free Internet (1594621) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477543)

I am here now and I give you permishin, except you, Laura. Yoiu and I will go into the closit and make out now.

lol (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477547)

lol

---

~*~*~This post bough to you by GNAA Incorporated~*~*~

Different use of URL/Searchs (4, Interesting)

RichMan (8097) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477561)

A lot of places over there present search terms rather than URL's as references for objects. This is in the majority of advertising. It is wrong, but it is what is commonly done. They have confused address with search. And this is the result

Re:Different use of URL/Searchs (3, Informative)

V. P. Winterbuttocks (2246736) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477597)

What? Did you even read the same summary as I did? Wait - don't answer that.

He's complaining because when you type his name into google, the auto-completion suggests adding words to the end of your search, which leads you to ten thousand or so pages that indicate he's a criminal.

The only remaining question is, what's his name?

Re:Different use of URL/Searchs (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477859)

He's a cyborg and his name is AK-47.

Re:Different use of URL/Searchs (4, Funny)

Oswald McWeany (2428506) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478027)

The only remaining question is, what's his name?

Dunno but I 'm starting a shortlist

Rob A. Bank
Jay Walker
Nick A Telly

Re:Different use of URL/Searchs (4, Funny)

thedonger (1317951) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478089)

The only remaining question is, what's his name?

Dunno but I 'm starting a shortlist

Rob A. Bank Jay Walker Nick A Telly

George Bush

P.S. This is a joke; not a troll.

Re:Different use of URL/Searchs (1, Troll)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478083)

If his name is apparently the same as Japans most prolific criminal, perhaps he should just consider changing his name?

Re:Different use of URL/Searchs (1)

V. P. Winterbuttocks (2246736) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478153)

Perhaps someone who's Japanese could enlighten us as to how much they value the name they were given at birth. It's probably a bit more than you'd expect, and then some.

Re:Different use of URL/Searchs (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477637)

Sort of like how US companies used to advertise AOL keywords rather than URLs, I take it?

Re:Different use of URL/Searchs (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478003)

... the use of which has (finally) died in a fire. Perhaps they should take note, and stop walking on coals.

Re:Different use of URL/Searchs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39478169)

And what they now do with Facebook?

Whaaaaaaaat? (5, Insightful)

JustAnotherIdiot (1980292) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477573)

You mean that out of the 7 billion people on this planet, there might be one with the same name? And he might be a criminal? GASP.
No, what am I saying? That's crazy talk. Only one person can have that name, so clearly he did all those terrible things.
Secretary? Go fire that guy in cubicle 3. Google said he's a criminal.

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (5, Funny)

jeffmeden (135043) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477711)

You mean that out of the 7 billion people on this planet, there might be one with the same name? And he might be a criminal? GASP.

No, what am I saying? That's crazy talk. Only one person can have that name, so clearly he did all those terrible things.

Secretary? Go fire that guy in cubicle 3. Google said he's a criminal.

Just because his name is Brutal Killingspree doesn't mean he should instantly and permanently be associated with heinous crimes on the internet. Come on, talk about unreasonable.

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (2)

Luckyo (1726890) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477829)

I have to say, that is a one epic name.

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (1)

R3d M3rcury (871886) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477893)

I gotta admit, I have a new name for my unborn daughter.

You have no imagination. (2)

V. P. Winterbuttocks (2246736) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477923)

"Excuse me - do you have an unborn daughter in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?"

"Happy to see you. Would you like to be introduced to Brutal Killingspree?"

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (2, Informative)

Oswald McWeany (2428506) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478047)

Don't be absurd. ... that's a boy's name.

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (1)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478381)

I know Brutal Killingspree. Helped me plant a vegetable garden once. Great with kids. Hell of a nice guy.

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477737)

You would be surprised how many employers will reject a potential employee based on unfounded roomers. Even if his skills are needed, many will simply say "why take the risk" and many employers have the mentality that to get the job you need to be from the top 1% and spotless. Trust me on this

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (2)

Kjella (173770) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478031)

You would be surprised how many employers will reject a potential employee based on unfounded roomers. Even if his skills are needed, many will simply say "why take the risk" and many employers have the mentality that to get the job you need to be from the top 1% and spotless. Trust me on this

Roomers, seriously? Anyway, it's not like candidates are that transparent. Usually you end up with a pool of them that haven't really disqualified themselves in any way, that all look like "okay" workers but you won't know which are the lemons and which are actually good. If you find a reason to disqualify one, great the pool just got smaller. They don't have to be ivy league with honors, but if you're "marked" there's plenty fish in the sea that are not. In all honestly both in the job interviews I've done myself and the few I've been interviewing I've felt that it's a lot easier to single yourself out in a negative way than in a positive way. If you made it through without any major shows of ignorance or awkwardness or character mismatch, it was probably a good interview.

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (4, Funny)

gnick (1211984) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478479)

Roomers, seriously?

Yes - unfounded roomers. Those are tenants in your house that can't be located. And if you're not even good enough to locate everyone living there, you may be unqualified for many jobs.

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39478063)

In all the places I've worked, the hiring manager would've been smart enough to look past an unfounded rumor (especially something as weak as a keyword recommendation on a Google search).

The problem is HR, which is responsible for preselecting candidates that haven't been directly recommended to the hiring manager. HR people aren't very bright, and their process often consists of scanning resumes in search of buzzwords. They also use things like Facebook and LinkedIn to figure out who the candidate is. So it seems very credible that someone would be rejected for a job based on a false association on a Google search.

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (2)

preaction (1526109) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478343)

And corporations built with people like these are probably going to cause you grief when you have all the buzzwords but do not conform to their idea of corporate culture: You're a replaceable cog in a machine. You are an interchangeable part with a heartbeat.

If I'm ever rejected because of Google's auto-complete, I will consider it a bullet well-dodged.

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (1)

hcs_$reboot (1536101) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477743)

Especially if the Japanese man in question is named Tanaka or Suzuki...

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477903)

Hiroshi Bukkake??? dad is that you??? Were sorry Mr. Bukkake we had no idea.

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (1)

fluffythedestroyer (2586259) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477927)

That's what i was thinking too. Those employee must be idiots or something. Really, If I look for my name, it seems like, at first glance, I'm a editor for a journalist, a techno freak that has a blog and a known person to have commited fraud in Florida couple of years ago. But another quick search will reveil this is not me. They only have my name which is normal in my province. I can't believe I hate a unique name from over 7b people on earth. That would be amazing.

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39478415)

MY name is shared with that of a very popular rhythm and blues singer whose songs are basically considered the go-to music for romantic nights in.

Anyone who searches for me comes up with thousands of hits for HIM, plus an engineer or two from England and (sadly) a relative of Dick Cheney's.

You can't find ME in that thicket of weirdness anywhere.

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (2)

thedonger (1317951) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478107)

I side with the plaintiffs.

Sincerely,
John Wayne Gacy Jones

Re:Whaaaaaaaat? (1)

djh2400 (1362925) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478151)

This is precisely why we need to start identifying people by their /. UID.

-- Posted by 1362925

Alternative: (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477587)

Court orders employers not to be morons.

I don't care about the reasons (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477589)

I don't really care *why* they turn off autocomplete, so long as they turn it off.

It's incredibly irritating and I'll be glad to see it gone.

Re:I don't care about the reasons (3, Interesting)

Bucky24 (1943328) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477639)

And if they're not planning to turn it off for everyone (which makes sense, some people actually make use of it), at least give others the option to turn it off for just themselves. I personally like autocomplete but I can understand why others wouldn't, and I think we should have the choice.

Re:I don't care about the reasons (1)

Xphile101361 (1017774) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477793)

Exactly how would this stop another person, on another computer, from auto-completing your name and having it associated with certain words? As this is what the article was about.

Re:I don't care about the reasons (1)

Bucky24 (1943328) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477877)

I'm aware. I wasn't responding to the article, but rather the OP, who was talking about autocomplete being irritating.

Re:I don't care about the reasons (1, Informative)

afidel (530433) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477821)

Search Settings->Never show instant results, not so difficult.

Re:I don't care about the reasons (1)

Bucky24 (1943328) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477905)

That's not working for me... I found the setting and switched it off but still seeing the autocomplete prediction. Probably has something do with me using Chrome...

Re:I don't care about the reasons (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39478029)

I just stopped using Google because of this retarded flashing of results. I mostly use Bing for my searches now. It is quite rare that I go to Google these days.

Re:I don't care about the reasons (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477959)

That's great for instant results, now what about auto-complete?

Re:I don't care about the reasons (3, Informative)

oyenamit (2474702) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478017)

You are confusing 'auto-complete' with 'instant search results'.
'Auto-complete' provides relevant suggestions in the search text box based on what you have typed so far.
'Instant results' shows the output of the search without you having to press enter after you have finished typing in the search text box.

--
uh, what do I know !?!?

Re:I don't care about the reasons (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39478451)

That setting is only remembered when your logged in. The default should be off... off... off...

Re:I don't care about the reasons (2)

sociocapitalist (2471722) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478457)

It's not him searching that's the problem, it's when others do a search on him. Presumably he doesn't have control over their Search Settings.

Re:I don't care about the reasons (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477801)

Use this link to search google instead
http://www.google.com/webhp?complete=0 [google.com]

Re:I don't care about the reasons (1)

PhilHibbs (4537) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478159)

I just tried that and it doesn't make any difference.

Re:I don't care about the reasons (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477991)

Turn it off for yourself. Or are you just a paranoid fuck who surfs with cookies turned off?

Mr. Sonee Dnewn Ame (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477629)

It didn't occur to this guy that it would be smart to change his name, instead of taking on Google?

Kudos to the Japanese (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477631)

About time someone teaches the arrogant Google creeps a lesson. Google, take your privacy invading products and shove them up your ass!

--
I care about my privacy, so I NEVER user any Google product.

Re:Kudos to the Japanese (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477917)

Sure, that's why you use Bing!

Then you can get google results filtered by Microsoft.

Let's see if I understand (5, Insightful)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477641)

The guy has a name. When you time the first 3-4 letters of the name, google autocompletes the name with a Crime word, which links to 10,000 entries about said crime. And the HR lady who is looking at this results thinks the guy is a criminal, so she puts his resume in the reject pile.

I don't see how that is Google's fault. That's the fault of stupid HR ladies who don't know how to do a proper search (i.e. finish typing the guy's name).

Re:Let's see if I understand (5, Funny)

jandrese (485) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477705)

I guess this is a lesson for any prospective parents out there: Don't name your child Pedophil or Murdebby.

Re:Let's see if I understand (0)

PeanutButterBreath (1224570) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477803)

. . .who don't know how to do a proper search (i.e. finish typing the guy's name).

Maybe they are afraid that they will be fired for using Google for suspicous purposes if they pursue his application any further.

The guy should change his name. Its silly and wrong that he should have to do so, but he is pretty much screwed and Google is much more interested in providing whiz-bang features to the .1% of users who give a rats ass longer than 15 seconds than avoiding evil (even if unintended).

Re:Let's see if I understand (3, Informative)

V. P. Winterbuttocks (2246736) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477845)

No. PC World has a better article [pcworld.com] with a bit more detail.

"The auto-complete function in Google's search bar fills in crimes when my client's name is entered," ... a false story about him containing allegations apparently spread across various sites, which were then indexed by the search giant

So basically you type "Glenn Beck" and it suggests that you add "murdered girl in 1990" to the search. Except that the guy's actual name and the crimes were, of course, withheld.

Re:Let's see if I understand (1)

Catbeller (118204) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478061)

You can't disable stupid.

Re:Let's see if I understand (2)

V. P. Winterbuttocks (2246736) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478079)

You can, but hit-and-run homicides are frowned upon.

Google should hire him. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477673)

There should be some balance, if this is true.

YES! (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477831)

I didn't RTFA, but who cares as long as it gets turned off.

If you hate it as much as I do (android), you can use http://www.google.com/webhp?complete=0&hl=en as your homepage.

Re:YES! (1)

fluffythedestroyer (2586259) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478055)

It only allows you to turn off instant search, not autocomplete... and yes RTFA

I bet only japan uses japanese auto-complete (0)

gurps_npc (621217) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477865)

How many other countries use Japanese auto-complete besides Japan? To me, it looks like this is a Japan only feature, it should be governed by Japanese law.

Yes, I generally agree that the laws of a country that houses the servers should apply.

But from a practical standpoint, Google is ignoring it's founding statement "Don't Be Evil". This is not the first time they have forgotten the "n't".

Re:I bet only japan uses japanese auto-complete (1)

digitig (1056110) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477941)

I don't think any countries use it. Japanese speakers probably use it, whatever country they're in.

Re:I bet only japan uses japanese auto-complete (1)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477963)

There are Japanese speakers in other countries than Japan.

Re:I bet only japan uses japanese auto-complete (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39478209)

Of course, but what other country than Japan uses Japanese as its national language?

Re:I bet only japan uses japanese auto-complete (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477975)

But from a practical standpoint, Google is ignoring it's founding statement "Don't Be Evil".

I disagree. Or rather, I draw a distinct line between "being evil" and "having someone else happy to do whatever it takes to assign evil to you".

Seriously, this is either stupidity on the part of HR departments or a person with very strong mental disorders (paranoia, solipsism, neurotic behavior, etc). I don't consider it Google's fault that HR seems to be dedicated to making people fail by blatantly misinterpreting information, nor that this guy is considering every hiring failure he's ever had to be due to a very specific application of Google's auto-complete and a direct attack on him.

Re:I bet only japan uses japanese auto-complete (2)

Ultra64 (318705) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478145)

>Google is ignoring it's founding statement "Don't Be Evil".

Yes, I can see how automatically completing words is a tool of Satan.

Re:I bet only japan uses japanese auto-complete (2)

lgw (121541) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478449)

But from a practical standpoint, Google is ignoring it's founding statement "Don't Be Evil".

Look closer. Google's motto is obviously "don't, be evil", whatever they tell outsiders.

Fuck David Drummond (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477871)

David Drummond, Google's Chief Legal Asshole is the imbecile that has decided not to comply with this. He is also the asshole who came up with the new super-creepy privacy policy. Go fuck yourself, David!

--
mchurch

Rick Santorum .... (4, Funny)

PPH (736903) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477899)

... will be joining his lawsuit.

Re:Rick Santorum .... (3, Insightful)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478255)

Rick Santorum's name didn't turn up defamatory results on a Google search until he started claiming that sexual acts between consenting adults were morally equivalent to sexual acts involving children and animals. In other words, that's satire and political speech, not a mistake.

Re:Rick Santorum .... (1, Troll)

lgw (121541) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478465)

And leaving it that way is political speech by Google. Which is fine, they have that right. Google has an oddball political bias anyhow.

The man's name is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39477937)

, so of course it'll be a problem...

Anonymous suing? (1)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#39477961)

. According to the man, whose name has been withheld, when his name is typed into the Google search engine auto-complete suggests words associated with criminal behavior.

So you can sue someone in Japan without revealing who you are? Especially since in this case to problem is with the name of the plaintiff, this makes very hard for Google to defend themselves.

Google not ruled by Japanese law? Really? (1, Interesting)

Catbeller (118204) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478015)

If Google is not ruled by Japanese law, why is every country on earth subject to American law on copyright?

Not only that, but America claims that Americans everywhere on the planet are subject to American law no matter where they are.

Julian Assange and Megaupload would be really surprised to hear about the concept that Japanese laws don't apply to America.

America also maintains that our laws apply to anyone in the world who does business here, even to the limited extent of renting server space on our soil.

Why, that means that America is Really Special and other people's laws don't apply here, and our law applies everywhere. Good to get that out there, fully stated. (Isn't that an empire?)

Corrections (5, Insightful)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478161)

1. There are international treaties and laws governing copyright enforced by Interpol.
2. Please point me to a single official statement from the White House or American ambassador on this
3. Assange has never been charged with a crime in the US. The US has not filed for his extradition. Megaupload had severs in the US that broke US law.
4. If you do business in a country you are bound by those laws. Google had to abide by Chinese laws in China for example. So they shifted traffic to servers in Hong Kong where laws are different. This isn't a difficult concept and it is global.
5. You've made a litany of unfounded, untrue statements.

You would be correct if you suggested that the US government has encouraged nations to pass copyright protection laws. But even in doing so, they acknowledge that each country has its own legal jurisdiction and legal system. The United States arguably doesn't have any exports nearly as important as IP, so the government tries to protect those interests in negotiating with other nations. It is in the best interest that they do so.

Re:Corrections (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39478517)

"acknowledge that each country has its own legal jurisdiction and legal system"

And what about Richard O'Dwyer? UK citizen, UK site, hosted in the UK, Not breaking any UK laws and yet he is getting extradited to America.

Dont use Google then (2)

fluffythedestroyer (2586259) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478041)

http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/5-secret-search-engines-way-better-than-google/ [bigoakinc.com]

follow this link and read the 5 search engine. Seriously guys, theres more than google out there. This is just a small example. I'm pretty sure other search engines exists that are better than Google and not mentioned here

Deficiency of the Human Mind (2)

Kylon99 (2430624) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478137)

It strikes me that this is more a problem with our society's mindset rather than it being a problem with auto-complete or related search terms. I think most of us on here can grasp how many people may have the same names, or rather, just because one term is popular with another doesn't mean you've found a correlation of what exactly you had in mind. But we skew very highly for technical people on here.

What about the population in general? I would say most people aren't familiar with the search and correlation algorithms data mining services uses. So it can lead to misunderstandings like this. But then the solution is not to take away the technology but to increase education. We shall not ban cameras but educate people on why photographs gives people what looks like 'devil's eyes,' for example.

But I really think this is going to be hard. The amount of information out there far outstrips our current brain's capacity to understand. And so we have things like selection bias. I think in the future we will need another device beyond the computer which will allow us to both process and comprehend all this data. Perhaps a brain implant. Like the factory to the industrial revolution, a device that accelerates the information revolution.

Bundy (3)

amoeba1911 (978485) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478141)

If your name is Bundy, it means you are either a serial killer or a pathetic shoe salesman.

This story is somewhat similar to the Los Alfaques story where search results to a sunny beach resort returns pictures of burned corpses.

Re:Bundy (2)

Tanman (90298) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478493)

No, this is not similar.

The burned bodies were *at the resort* because there had been a huge explosion there that killed many people. The resort was trying to censor history of the event because, much like a house in which the previous occupants had all been murdered, it was affecting their business.

Suing the wrong target? (4, Insightful)

Dr Herbert West (1357769) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478167)

Seems to me that the HR flacks are not doing their job properly if they associate a search cloud with the work history of a prospective hire. If I do a search for a person and "autocomplete" gives me unusual results, I don't immediately stop typing and have a spaz-- I take an extra second to finish the search. I can't even see how this could be considered a form of libel or slander, as in the "Santorum" situation (which I find to be hilarious, and not slander at all BTW). This guy's beef is with the HR departments, not the company that makes tools used by the lazy HR drones.

Google is working exactly as it should-- associating popular searches with similar words. Let's say my name is Killroy, Bob-- does the judge really think that upon typing in "Kill" and upon seeing the following results: "killer elite, kill the irishman, kill bill, killer whale" the reasonable choice is to stop typing assume the applicant is a killer whale? Absurd.

On a related note, I made a JAVA applet that uses autocomplete to generate "food" for little animated "animals": AutoComplete Hive Mind Cannibals [vimeo.com] . I LIKE autocomplete, it is a weird profile of what people search for and what associations they make.

Seven years? (3, Interesting)

CosaNostra Pizza Inc (1299163) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478261)

Wouldn't it make more sense for him to change his name rather than put up with the supposed cause of his employment woes for seven years? It sounds suspicious to me. It seems more likely there are other underlying reasons why he gets fired.

Re:Seven years? (2)

aztrailerpunk (1971174) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478411)

He spends his work days googling himself.

Seems odd to sue (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39478351)

I guess Americans aren't the only ones who are sue happy.

I was looking for a job in the recent past and this was definitely something that came up. More and more employers are using search engines and social media to research perspective employees so this type of thing can happen, especially with common names. It really shouldn't be that hard to deal with the issue once you are aware of it assuming the information that is being found is not about you.

Step 1) Get proof that it isn't you from the appropriate source. If the search says there is a warrant out for your arrest in San Fransisco get the SFPD to provide a certified letter that you aren't the person they are looking for.

Step 2) Warn companies you are applying to that they will find this information if they do a search but that it isn't you and provide a copy of the proof.

Step 3) Bring in original proof once you get the job so they can see/copy the original.

If the info they are finding is actually about you then you are just dealing with the results of your actions.

Burying the Lead (1)

ddd0004 (1984672) | more than 2 years ago | (#39478425)

What sort of crazy porn do you have to search for in Japan to raise an eyebrow?

Dillinger as in John? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39478481)

If you have a name like that, you will have some interesting results to a search. It's all in the name.

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