Bruce D. Brown

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Europe’s Web Privacy Rules: Bad for Google, Bad for Everyone

It's been a rough few months for Google in Europe. Not only has the European Union hit the company with a second antitrust investigation, but — in a move that has received less press, but could have wider consequences — French regulators have pushed it to restrict search results all over the world to comply with their “right to be forgotten” privacy laws.

That’s a problem for a company whose business model is built on search. But it may be an even bigger problem for Internet users. If a European government can control what people all over the world get to see on the Internet, why can’t every other country do the same?…  Seguir leyendo »

After a two-year investigation, the Federal Trade Commission concluded this week that Google’s search practices did not violate antitrust law. Those who wanted to see an epic battle like the one the government fought with Microsoft in the 1990s were sorely disappointed. But the analogy to the browser war of the Web’s early days was never the right one. It failed to capture the dangers free speech would have faced if regulators had agreed with Google’s critics.

The theories that many critics advanced — that search must be “neutral” because it is akin to a public utility, or that computer-generated search results are not speech and therefore not protected under the First Amendment — would have undermined free press principles across the Internet.…  Seguir leyendo »