Google couldn’t hide behind Section 230 this time
Posted BY: | NwoReport
In brief: Imagine Googling your name and discovering search results that link to an article falsely calling you a pedophile. Now imagine that Google refused to remove the links. That’s the nightmare situation one Montreal businessman had to deal with for years, but now Google must pay him $500,000 for his troubles.
The “prominent businessman” in the case was granted anonymity throughout the proceedings, writes Ars Technica. He was once at the “pinnacle of the commercial real estate brokerage world” in the US and Canada but found that in 2006/2007, several clients declined to do business with him after a series of good meetings. In April 2007, the man discovered why: a website called RipoffReport.com had published a post in April 2006 falsely stating that he was a con man and “convicted of child molestation in 1984.”
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As one would normally do in this situation, the man contacted the founder of the website, asking them to remove the post. But they refused, stating that they never pulled posts and asked the man to prove he was never charged with being a pedophile. Quebec Supreme Court judge Azimuddin Hussain called the website’s request a “Kafkaesque reverse-burden demand to prove one’s innocence.”