Google Has To Give Up Personal YouTube Data

    July 3, 2008

Just yesterday, I had a conversation, agreeing that the only thing that could topple Google, would be privacy. The same day, a judge presiding over the Google/Viacom case issued a court order requiring Google to turn over your personal data.

The EFF reports the order requires Google to hand over YouTube’s Logging database. What’s in YouTube’s logging database?

…for each instance a video is watched, the unique “login ID” of the user who watched it, the time when the user started to watch the video, the internet protocol address other devices connected to the internet use to identify the user’s computer (“IP address”), and the identifier for the video.

I’ve bolded the entire text, because this is serious Pilgrims! If Google complies, potentially millions of YouTube users will have their private details handed to Viacom!

The EFF states that the judge has likely broken the law, with his ruling–your video viewing preferences are supposedly protected by the Video Privacy Protection Act.

Over at TechCrunch, Michael Arrington speculates that Viacom only requested this information, so that it may determine who watched copyrighted content, and sue them too.

I’ll close, echoing Arrington’s sentiment:

I say this with the utmost respect, but Judge Stanton is a moron. And Google simply cannot hand this data over without facing a class action lawsuit of staggering proportions.

The ball’s in your court now Google. Throw us users under the bus, and we might just do the same to you!