Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Saga to the Italian Supreme Court

In December of last year, an Italian Court of Appeals overturned my conviction—as well as that of two other Googlers—for violating Italian privacy law in a case that stemmed from a user-uploaded video.  I was pleased that well-reasoned legal principles had prevailed, and was hopeful that that would be the end of this long saga.  Last week, however, the Italian prosecutor appealed the Court’s decision to the Court of Cassation (the Italian Supreme Court).  This case, unfortunately, is not over.  In its appeal to the Court of Cassation, the Italian prosecutor asserts—in addition to arguing that employees like me can be held criminally responsible for user-uploaded videos that we had no knowledge of and nothing to do with—that platforms like YouTube should be responsible for prescreening user-uploaded content and obtaining the consent of people shown in user-uploaded videos.  I, and the many others who have voiced their support, view this as a threat to freedom of expression on the Internet.  I’m disappointed that this case is not over, but continue to believe that ultimately justice will prevail. 

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