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Google Sued For Panty Picture

by Tom Moccia | December 28, 2010December 28, 2010 2:00 pm PDT

Google is a huge company with many business ventures, and one that has been getting a lot of attention lately is how they acquire photos for Street View on their maps. Many people around the world have expressed privacy concerns, and even some governments have even given citizens the right to remove their home photos from the service. Google has also had issues with their data collection vehicles collecting personal data over unencrypted, unsecured Wi-Fi networks. None of this has come as a shock to the tech world as these things tend to slip through the cracks when a company grows as quickly as Google has over the last decade.

screen-shot-2010-12-24-at-34618-pmIn a strange story by all accounts, a lawsuit is facing Google that no one could have predicted. The Telegraph is reporting that a woman in Japan is suing the internet conglomerate after a photo of here underwear allegedly appeared on Google’s Street View mapping service.

The woman apparently looked up her own home using the Street View feature of Google maps, and not only found a photo of her home, but it included her panties hanging on a clothesline.

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

Google removed the photo about the time the woman had filed the lawsuit but is still seeking 600,000 Yen or roughly $7,000USD, citing that the ordeal has exacerbated her obsessive-compulsive disorder and felt “that everything she was doing throughout the day was being secretly recorded.” The women claims that she is not opposed to taking a photo of the front of buildings and residences “but showing a person’s underwear hanging outside is absolutely wrong.”

Do you think Google has the obligation to edit out personal data including undergarments? What types of things would you have an issue with showing up on Google’s Street View?

Tom Moccia

Tom Moccia is a native of Stamford, Connecticut and moved his family west in 2000 and now calls Stockton, California home with his wife and two...