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What is Google's responsibility here?

fred rosenberger
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  16

I heard a blurb on NPR the other day. Apparently there is a town in Florida with a population of about 90,000 that was left off Google Maps (and it's been replaced and lost several times). If you do a search for 'florists' in that zip code, it actually directs you to a shop 10 miles away. the local business are complaining that they are loosing customers because of this.

So what is Google's responsibility and liability here? They are providing a free service, with (to my knowledge) no guarantee of anything, so they have none. On the other hand, they are becoming a de facto standard source of all information.

I'm kind of torn on this. anyone have an opinion?


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Paul Sturrock
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Joined: Apr 14, 2004
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Unless someone in the US legislates otherwise they have no legal liability. Whether you think Google's ever increasing monopoly as a gateway to information is a healthy thing is a different matter.


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Jimmy Clark
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On the other hand, they are becoming a de facto standard source of all information.


Google has a nice web site. I like the fact that there are no advertisements, articles or other distractions on their main web page. I use their web site
to search the Internet for things with the understanding that not everything I may find is accurate. However, I can also search the Internet using other search engines. Google is not responsible for ensuring accuracy or completeness in anything in regards to web surfers using their search engines.

It is incorrect to think of Google as the "source of of all information" as they present a search engine only. They are not publishing the material that is searched.
That said, as society dumbs down and becomes less intelligent, who knows what will happen in the coming decades...scary stuff if you think about it too much
Paul Sturrock
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I like the fact that there are no advertisements

Are you using the same google I use? Their main business is as an ad broker. Search results I get from them are full of sponsored links.


It is incorrect to think of Google as the "source of of all information" as they present a search engine only.


Agreed, which is why I used the phrase "gateway to".
Pat Farrell
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    5

fred rosenberger wrote:I'm kind of torn on this. anyone have an opinion?

The bozos in that town need a website, put in details on the town, its zip code, lat/long and links to local businesses.
A bit of trivial SEO will solve the problem. The problem is self inflicted.
Jimmy Clark
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I like the fact that there are no advertisements, articles or other distractions on their main web page.


If you compare the Google.com main web page and the Yahoo.com main web page, you will see a big difference.

There are no advertisements on the Google.com main web page.

Their main business is as an ad broker. Search results I get from them are full of sponsored links.


The search results pages and the main page are not the same.
marc weber
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Joined: Aug 31, 2004
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fred rosenberger wrote:... On the other hand, they are becoming a de facto standard source of all information...

There's the problem.


"We're kind of on the level of crossword puzzle writers... And no one ever goes to them and gives them an award." ~Joe Strummer
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fred rosenberger
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  16

You don't consider google maps to be a source of information? If i go to 'maps.google.com', and type "florists near <my home address>, I get a pretty satellite picture of my hometown with little icons over all the florist shops near my house.

If you had a florist near me that didn't appear here, wouldn't you be upset?
Pat Farrell
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    5

fred rosenberger wrote:If you had a florist near me that didn't appear here, wouldn't you be upset?

If I owned the florist shop, and if the shop had a good website, sure.

Otherwise, no way.
Jimmy Clark
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If I owned the florist shop, and if the shop had a good website, sure.


"good website" What does "good website" mean? Google's interpretation of "good", something friendly for their bots, spiders and indexing algorithms, something that does not conflict with their rules of "good."

Either way, Google does not have any legal or social responsibility for including "your" business on its search results pages or its Google Maps. If a business owner feels this way, they are mistaken. Even if the business owner creates a Google friendly web site, Google is still not liable for anything. This is the beauty of it - Google Smoogle
Pat Farrell
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    5

Jimmy Clark wrote:"good website" What does "good website" mean? Google's interpretation of "good", something friendly for their bots, spiders and indexing algorithms, something that does not conflict with their rules of "good."

Well, this is meaningless drivel, but from what I see, Google's definition of good matches my own view fairly well.

Ignoring the subjective. if you have a website for your florist shop, Google will include it. Its up to the site owner to make it contain useful information.
Jimmy Clark
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I guess that it is difficult to include rhetorical questions in your forums posts....interesting.
Paul Sturrock
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Jimmy Clark wrote:If you compare the Google.com main web page and the Yahoo.com main web page, you will see a big difference.

There are no advertisements on the Google.com main web page. .


So...you are suggesting that Google is advert free so long as you don't use it for searching the internet?
Jimmy Clark
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I am suggesting that there are no visible advertisements on the Google.com main web page. When you visit their main page do you see advertisements?

I am also suggesting that I personally like the fact that there are no advertisements, articles or other distractions on their main web page. I use their web site to search the Internet for things with the understanding that not everything I may find is accurate or current.

fred rosenberger
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  16

Here is the article on CNN.
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://aspose.com/file-tools
 
subject: What is Google's responsibility here?