Peeing man loses Google lawsuit

Court throws out damages claim - but Google had already withdrawn picture that made him a "laughing stock"

16 March 2012

DESPITE losing his case in court, the man snapped peeing in his back yard by Google Street View has won a victory as the internet giant has withdrawn his picture from the webpage.

The 50 year old claimed Google had made him the laughing stock of his village by publishing the picture - and lodged a complaint of intruding into his private life with the Tribunal de Grande Instance at Angers in Maine-et-Loire.

However, the judges threw out his complaint as he had made his complaint against Google France when the Street View service was edited by Google USA. They ordered him to pay €1,200 legal expenses to Google France.

The judges said he should, instead, continue his complaint against Google USA as he had also lodged a claim for €10,000 damages.

However, the man's lawyer said he probably would not continue the case as the photo had since been pulled from the site, adding: "We lost in law but we won in fact."

Lawyer Jean-Noël Bouillaud said he had been subject to much mocking in his village and everyone in the country round-about knew about the case. "In Paris, New York or Montreal it would not have been so serious, no one would have recognised him... but in the country, everyone knows each other and as soon as someone spotted the image it did the rounds."

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