Google Decision From Judge Magi Available Here

The full 111 page decision of Judge Oscar Magi of the Milan Ordinary Tribunal imposing liability on Google was released today and is available here.

Slaw readers may recall that on February 24 Judge Magi imposed six-month sentences (suspended) on three Google executives for allowing the posting on Google Video of a mobile-phone video showing a handicapped youth being harassed by his Turin classmates in September 2006. The company took two months to remove the video, which was posted in Google Italia’s “Most Fun Videos” section and received 5,500 hits before being removed.

“La Rete non è una prateria sconfinata dove tutto è permesso”, he thunders. There’s a nice summary in today’s Repubblica, and a briefer summary at Il Giornale.

Four defendants were acquitted of defamation, but three (Google Chief Legal Officer David Drummond, Global Privacy Counselor Peter Fleischer and former Chief Financial Officer George Reyes) were charged with the privacy violation and were convicted. I have no idea why the former head of Google Video Europe Arvind Desikan was not charged with breaching privacy.

We’ve noted before how divergent European and North American views are on the appropriate regulatory instrument for privacy breaches.

Judge Magi


  1. Hot off the presses, indeed.

    I think he thundered: “The internet is not a lawless prairie where anything is permitted.” Which “wild west” reference suggests just a teensy tinge of cultural bias, no? (And that from the land of the spaghetti western.)

    For them as lacks the language of Dante (among which sorry lot I number myself), there’s a summary in English on NetworkWorld, among other places.