Dec 192010
 December 19, 2010  Posted by  Court, Non-U.S., Online

Julian Ryall reports:

A Japanese woman is suing Google for displaying images of underwear hanging on her washing line on its Street View function.

The woman, who has not been named, is suing the internet giant for 600,000 Yen (£4,588) claiming the images caused her psychological distress, according to Japan’s Mainichi newspaper.

The first hearing in the case was held this week in the southern city of Fukuoka.

“I was overwhelmed with anxiety that I might be the target of a sex crime,” the woman told a district court. “It caused me to lose my job and I had to change my residence.”

Read more in The Telegraph

Over on CNET, Chris Matyszczyk writes:

For myself, I am astonished that Google has allowed this landmark case to be hung in a courtroom. The plaintiff is seeking a mere 600,000 Yen, which might, if a following wind attached itself to the currency exchange rate, amount to a little more than $7,000. The woman claims that Google did remove her underwear around the time that she filed suit, while Google reportedly says it is now looking into the whole thing.

Surely Google might understand the lady’s distress and pay up. It is a small price to offer for such a wanton and gratuitous display of smalls.

Frankly, I’m not surprised by the lawsuit and I’d be very surprised if there aren’t many more like it in the future, which may be why Google didn’t rush to settle the lawsuit.

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