Skip to comments.Feds want Google search records (part of effort to revive an Internet child protection law)
Posted on 01/18/2006 9:27:48 PM PST by NormsRevenge
The Bush administration on Wednesday asked a federal judge to order Google to turn over a broad range of material from its closely guarded databases.
The move is part of a government effort to revive an Internet child protection law struck down two years ago by the U.S. Supreme Court. The law was meant to punish online pornography sites that make their content inaccessible to minors. The government contends it needs the Google data to determine how often pornography shows up in online searches.
In court papers filed in U.S. District Court in San Jose, Justice Department lawyers revealed that Google has refused to comply with a subpoena issued last year for the records, which include a request for one million random Web addresses and records of all Google searches from any one-week period.
The Mountain View-based search engine opposes releasing the information on a variety of grounds, saying it would violate the privacy rights of its users and reveal company trade secrets, according to court documents.
Nicole Wong, an associate general counsel for Google, said the company will fight the government's effort ``vigorously.''
``Google is not a party to this lawsuit, and the demand for the information is overreaching,'' Wong said.
The government argues that it needs the information as it prepares to once again defend the constitutionality of the Child Online Protection Act in a federal court in Pennsylvania. The law was struck down in 2004 because it was too broad and could prevent adults from accessing legal porn sites.
However, the Supreme Court invited the government to either come up with a less drastic version of the law or go to trial to prove that the statute does not violate the First Amendment and is the only viable way to combat child porn.
(Excerpt) Read more at mercurynews.com ...
So...porn sites should be accessible to minors?? What am I missing here?
Absolutely right - the government seems to think they have a right to any and all data held by nongovernmental organizations. The allegation is not that they have done anything illigal - they just want to analyze Google's data to see who might have been doing something illegal.
Um, the scholastic records of Mr. Mintz and his editors?
There is only one way to make this content inaccessible to minors and that is to not have it, period. Some companies tried making their websites inaccessible if you didn't have a credit card, by making it so you had to log in, but only allowed to log in if you had a credit card but that didn't work, because alot of kids have credit cards.
We'll see if the Merc edits that little piece.
Oh so now Google is answerable to the govt ?
It's even worse than that -- according to the article, the feds just want the data in order to help them argue a point of law...
This intrusion thing is a slippery slope. Enough already. Don't we have enough problems to work on? Spend the time fixing things in Iraq and with the deficit, and the hundred other things that are going wrong.
How does this type of thing make anyone more secure? It's a bunch of BS. I hope Google prevails. I'd side with the libertarian leaners on this issue.
But it's for the children.
I very much hope this fails for the government. This is like a pre-cognitive crime. "If you don't have anything to hide, why were you searching for the words 'girls tight dresses pigtails', hmm?"
How would this help prosecute the internet sites that are hosted outside of this country?
As much as I disagree with the politics of the founders of Google, this is pretty scary. The search records could be used for any type of snooping. I hope Google stands firm, and I hope the courts do, too.
Are they completely impaired?
Why do they need to subpoena Google's search records to find the content providers? The article says they're after the site owners/content providers. They could just do searches themselves to find the sites, then work with Network Solutions to find out the domain owner info.
I guess the DOJ and WH have some of their search functions disabled or blocked since Clinton left town..
Confidential to the Justice Dept...
Just go to WWW.GOOGLE.COM and search for whatever you wish.
Maybe they think google is hiding the good stuff for themselves? :)
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