How a simple citizen sued Google

    Not one Yandex to sue Google! An indicative and even precedent example for Russian justice was the Moscow City Court's judicial act, which protected the right of an ordinary citizen to privacy of correspondence, telephone calls, postal, telegraphic and other things, guaranteed by Article 23 of the Constitution of the Russian Federation. Why is this court so remarkable? Now we will tell.

    ATTENTION! Next, we describe the essence of a specific litigation. The text may contain dry legal terms. We advise you to remove children, women and other people with vulnerable psyche from screens.


    Used picture from the site Pikabu.ru

    Whoever owns the information owns the world” N. Rothschild (Ilya Lvov, the author of the legal part of the article, very much asked for this quote. We could not refuse him.)

    The initiator of the sensational case was Yekaterinburg lawyer Anton Leonidovich Burkov , who drew attention to the fact that Google offers in the form of contextual advertising to purchase a mobile phone, go on vacation or visit a restaurant. It would seem that the situation is familiar to everyone.

    “But how does the search engine choose an advertising offer for a specific user?” Anton Leonidovich probably asked himself then. Not everyone even thinks about it, because it is so familiar, so obvious and so easily explained from the point of view of marketing. And here is the conclusion the lawyer made:Google through AdWords even analyzes the correspondence of users and on its basis selects an advertising product. The AdWords information system provides the ability to advertise on websites and in mail at Google International LLC, the owner of the eponymous search engine and email service.

    Speaking in a completely dry legal language, it works in Russia like this:
    Google Advertising Company , on its own behalf, concludes contracts for the provision of advertising services with customers in Russia. Based on these agreements, it provides the placement of advertising information to customers using AdWords. A client ordering advertising services, using the service’s user settings, independently chooses where to place his advertisement: in a search engine, in mailboxes, etc.

    It turns out that Google, albeit in an automated way, but still "reads" the correspondence! It’s not a discovery for anyone, and no one expected anyone to go to court because of this.
    It should be noted that Google is not the only one so beautiful: Yandex, Mail and other search engines using their services also do this, just not a single lawyer from Yekaterinburg has yet reached them.

    Referring to the secrecy of correspondence guaranteed to every Russian citizen, Anton Leonidovich went to court, where he lost the case in the first instance. The court indicated that the plaintiff did not provide the court with any evidence confirming that it was Google LLC that was engaged in ensuring the operation of the Gmail mail service and was viewing personal correspondence from it.

    But justice has triumphed!The second instance reversed the above decision. The panel of judges was more attentive to the study of the documents in the case and came to the opposite conclusion, concluding that Google still acts contrary to the Constitution of the mother of our Great Russia and violates the rights of its citizens.

    The court supported this conclusion with the following data:
    Google’s official website contains information that one of its branches is located in the Russian Federation and that, you will not believe, Google LLC is the defendant in this lawsuit. At the same time, Google, adhering to corporate discipline, uses the Google logo, as well as software owned by Google International LLC. In addition, Google LLC concludes contracts for the provision of advertising services with customers in Russia and ensures the placement of customer advertisements using AdWords.

    Moreover, Google doesn’t even hide what it reads correspondence: according to the privacy policy of the product posted on the official search engine website in the section "How we use the collected data", it is indicated:
    “... our systems automatically analyze your content to provide features that are useful to you. It can be search results selected for you, relevant advertisements, detection of spam and malware ... "

    The panel of judges of the second instance concluded that
    Google LLC, in fulfillment of its obligations under advertising contracts and its effective distribution in the Google product segment, automatically monitors emails and places advertisements in private correspondence of Russian citizens using Google services.

    At the same time, the court indicated that Google’s argument that it does not affect the criteria for displaying ads, as the AdWords settings are determined by the parent company in America, is untenable, as the defendant must bear the risks independently, realizing that the software he uses violates the constitutional rights of Russian citizens.

    Based on the foregoing, the judicial panel of the second instance came to the conclusion that Gugol, placing advertisements in the messages of Anton Leonidovich, is guided by the results of monitoring his correspondence and thereby violates the secrecy of his correspondence. There was no evidence to the contrary.

    In addition, Anton Leonidovich requested the recovery of moral damage that Google inflicted on him. He had every right to do this:
    “According to article 151 of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation, if a citizen has suffered non-pecuniary damage by actions violating his personal non-property rights, the court may impose on the offender the obligation to compensate for the specified damage. By virtue of Article 1101 of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation, compensation for non-pecuniary damage is carried out in cash and is determined by the court depending on the nature of the moral suffering inflicted on the victim, as well as on the degree of guilt of the injurer. ”

    Having assessed the level of experiences suffered by the plaintiff, the court exacted 50,000 rubles in his favor.

    “Cat's tears!” - you say? But taking into account the fact that the decision on this case received the widest resonance, lawsuits may sprinkle on Google as from a cornucopia, however, as well as to other mail services. Following the successful example of a Yekaterinburg lawyer, many email users will also want to stop spamming and reading correspondence. If you are in a good mood, you can succumb, the scheme will always be at hand.

    So it goes. And you are surprised that the state wants contextual advertising to take control. The Big Brother is watching, and our Fatherland cares about the safety of its citizens day and night. And not that you thought everything there and wrote in your social networks.

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