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Misc. News : Non-food Things Last Updated: Apr 20, 2011 - 9:38:09 AM

Court orders Google to turn over YouTube user database
By Jimmy Downs
Jul 5, 2008 - 2:35:46 PM

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SATURDAY July 5, 2008 ( -- A U.S. judge has ordered Google to turn over YouTube user data to Viacom which requested the information for a $1 billion copyright infringement lawsuit against the video-sharing service of the internet search engine giant, Reuters reported.

Judge Louis Stanton of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York granted the request for the user data including usernames of YouTube viewers, the videos they watched when, and user's computer addresses, according to Reuters.

The court order triggered privacy concerns among privacy activists from the Electronic Frontier Foundation who in response said that the order threatens to expose deeply private information and violates the Video Privacy Protection Act, a federal law passed in 1988.

Viacom said in a statement that it needs the data for its lawsuit against YouTube, but also said in hopes to diffuse privacy concerns that "Viacom has not asked for and will not be obtaining any personally identifiable information of any user."

Google on the other hand tried to request that only data with the personal identifiable information eliminated be given to Viacom, but Google senior litigation counsel Catherine Lacavera said Google was disappointed that "the court granted Viacom's overreaching demand for viewing history."

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