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Google Autocomplete Disabled in Japan

You start typing your keywords and phrases into the Google and as if by magic usually the phrase or keyword you’re typing is completed for you. This is Google’s autocomplete however it has been disabled in Japan because it violates privacy.

Autocomplete is a feature of the Google Search Service which uses a number of algorithms and stored data to predict what a person is searching for.

The problem arose when an unidentified man took the search giant Google to court after typing in his name and being linked to crimes which he wasn’t involved with. The Lawyer handling the case Mr Hiroyuki Tomita said that the effect on the man’s reputation has meant he has found it hard to gain employment.

A Japanese court has served Google with a provisional order which requests for Google to delete specific search terms from its Autocomplete although it didn’t request the complete removal of autocomplete.  

It has been argued that irretrievable damage could be caused if negative things are associated with say their name. In this case typing in his clients name would wrongly associate him with crimes which he had nothing to do with and this in turn could have a massive affect upon them say getting a job.

Google has since stated that the results which were generated were never generated by individual they were mechanical and therefore it was not an invasion of privacy. The argument is that automated search directs users to potentially false or misleading information.  None of the autocomplete search terms have been determined manually they are all terms which have been typed in previously by other Google Users.

It isn’t the first time that Google has had to tweak their autocomplete function; they had to tweak it in 2010 to ensure that no websites which were promoting or which enabled users to commit piracy would show but Google refused to remove sites hosting illegal copyright material from its search results.

What are your thoughts on the autocomplete function of Google Search?

Do you feel that it directs people to misleading information or information which could be false or is it something which you find helpful?

Brick technology web design personally has found it to be a useful feature and what you need to remember is that people may be directed towards information but it is for them to make their own decision on how they feel concerning this information and whether or not they believe it to be true or false.

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