Villagers Block Google Street View Car

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News Posted: Fri, Apr 3 2009 7:51 PM

Google’s Street View feature hasn’t always received the most positive reception. For instance, we’ve heard plenty of stories of people asking Google to remove images of their homes from the feature because of privacy concerns. This is a new one, however: Angry residents in Buckinghamshire village have chased a Google Street View car out of the area.

The car was taking photos of Broughton in Buckinghamshire for the Street View service when Paul Jacobs, a local resident, spotted it. He asked the car not to enter the village. Apparently, the driver of the car wasn’t deterred, because Jacobs later felt the need to rouse his neighbors. Together, the group surrounded the vehicle until the driver performed a U-turn and left the area.

Jacobs and the residents of the affluent neighborhood felt the photographs were an invasion of their privacy. In addition, the residents were worried the photographs might attract burglars. In an interview later, Jacobs said he was angry; “How dare anyone take a photograph of my home without my consent?" he said. Jacobs went on to explain how the area has had three burglaries in the past six weeks.

The Google Street View service launched last month in the UK. Jacobs and his neighbors’ aren’t alone in their concerns. Privacy International has written to the Information Commissioner’s Office to request the service be shut down after dozens of images have been pulled due to complaints.

Google issued a statement saying it was aware of the incident and believes the company’s existing privacy controls are suitable. Google also acknowledged that some people are not comfortable with images of their houses or cars being included in the Street View service. The company offers a way to request removal of the imagery and claims most image requests are processed within hours.

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Bunch of rednecks!!!

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Drago replied on Sat, Apr 4 2009 11:30 AM

Google needs to get permission before it takes photos, this removal after the fact is BS. I am really surprised some lawyers havnt made a killing sueing google for invasion of privacy.

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FaceTheSlayer:

Bunch of rednecks!!!

Actually, I read a different news article on this and it was a wealthy neighborhood where this had happened.

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I personally don't mind google streetview. They have a nice shot of my house. It is also cool to go look at the old neighborhoods that I grew up in. If someone really wants to rob you they can just as easily drive by your house without you ever knowing.

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wil2200 replied on Sun, Apr 5 2009 3:37 AM

Right, says this by the people whose country is overrun with CCTVs

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The rich are always afraid of the poor, as they continually rip the latter off, and they dearly hope that as the wife of the Bishop of Worcester put it when discussing Darwinism with a friend, «... it does not become widely known». But if this fact does, indeed, become widely known, it can at least be hoped that the poor will not be able to use Google's Street View service to find the homes of the rich - oops, «affluent»....

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I don't see what the hub-bub is about either. As bob said if someone is going to rob you chances are they will sit outside your house anyway to "scope it out".

It sounds like its just a case of people having little to do and bad attitudes....IMO they just need a hobby

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Riks replied on Sun, Apr 5 2009 5:34 PM

they're English, in the English country side

maybe they just got bored haha

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Google should have snapped a panoramic-view of the irate neighbors surrounding the car and posted it on Street View! 

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BebeX replied on Mon, Apr 6 2009 12:23 PM

Hmm..I personally don't think the google street thing is a big deal, but it's understandable that some people might find it inappropriate and a violation of their privacy- regardless of whether the information might be used to aid criminal activity, the real point is that people should be able to opt out of having personal information (i.e. pictures of their homes where the inside might be visible through the windows) broadcast on the 'net without their consent. It's a human rights issue. Like I said, it doesn't bother me, as a street-view image is only one step past the ariel images of our houses that are already online, but some people think this is a step too far. Fair enough, I say- maybe we need some legislation brought in to force the use of disclaimers for this sort of thing, as the interests of the public in a democracy should be more important than the interests of an international conglomerate...  

wil2200:

Right, says this by the people whose country is overrun with CCTVs

 

The CCTV thing is pretty alarming- apparently we're caught on CCTV 300 times a day on average! It is important to note however that this is mainly in the cities where crime rates are higher, and the fact is that CCTV security operators are helping to make the streets safer- this resource helps the police to intervene before an incident becomes serious, which is really reassuring when you're out and about in the cities at night. But there is still the issue with recording the activities of the public without their consent..

Whether you think it's all getting a bit too '1984', or it's a positive resource in crime-prevention, it definitely feels more safe than everyone running around with a gun...Wink

-Ben

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replied on Mon, Apr 6 2009 4:43 PM

They are so up in arms in the UK about google streetview it is hilarious.

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Riks replied on Mon, Apr 6 2009 5:35 PM

kewlncguy:

They are so up in arms in the UK about google streetview it is hilarious.

 

Yeah a friend of mine is getting his house taken off it for some reason =S i don't really care..

 

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some people are just parinoide

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I love Street View! When I took a look at my apartment building's street address I was shown a picture of the manager stretching out on the sidewalk just before his morning jog. He was wearing his patented skin-tight bicycle pants with the power-bulge in the front. All of my neighbors here are rolling! A similar drive-by shot of my Dad's address shows his neighbor exercising on the treadmill in her garage. Gee, I hope those terrorists and burglars don't see these PICS as it just might give them some kind of an edge here!Surprise Personally I like to sip a Beer and enjoy life, but it seems that some people are really uptight and paranoid about this kind of stuff!

 

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LovinIt replied on Sat, Apr 11 2009 1:42 AM

I side with the residents, if they don't want it then they shouldn't have to put up with it.

 

Luckily no street view option here in Canada, for the time being at least.

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replied on Sat, Apr 11 2009 1:44 AM

And whats really ironic is that they have the most surveillance cameras per capita than any other country don't they?

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replied on Sat, Apr 11 2009 1:49 AM

I like it. It came in really handy when I was looking for a house to buy. I would get the address from the listing then go to street view and look it and the area over before I went for a showing. It came in particularly handy when I saw a really great deal on this one house and then looked at it on streetview and noticed the gigantic hi voltage power line tower in the back yard :)

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BKopicz replied on Thu, Jun 23 2011 1:25 AM

I do not see what the big deal is really...Its not like someone is sitting at home in Maine..Sees your house in California and decides..I am going to rob THAT house....

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notryan replied on Fri, Jun 24 2011 5:54 PM
"'How dare anyone take a photograph of my home without my consent?' he said." Right, because there's no way they'd ever see it any other way, like driving around in a car trolling for wealthy-looking houses as most burglars do. I bet they think they'd be safer if they lived in a gated community, too.

wat

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Manduh replied on Sun, Nov 27 2011 6:22 PM

It looked like this post got dug up from the past but I don't see the reply anywhere now, maybe they deleted it. Either way I'm glad it was revived because I had no idea about it.

I love Google Street View and use it quite a lot when looking up directions. I find it easier to find a place when I have the image in my head, I find out what buildings are near by and what the area looks like BEFORE going there so no getting lost!  I have no problem with my address being visible, nor my car. Besides any car I've seen on Street View has their licenses blurred/whited out.  

I think these people need to leave their safe little bubble once in a while to embrace technology advances!

 If their area has had that many robberies it's obviously nothing to do with Google and more likely to do with the type of people hanging around their neighborhoods.

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steve-- replied on Sat, Dec 1 2012 11:32 AM

You're sadly mistaken. Google absolutely DOES NOT need to get permission to take photos, and even when they remove photos after the fact, as you say, this is done as a courtesy, not because they're legally obligated to.

You've got a lot to learn!

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Aoshi replied on Sat, Dec 1 2012 5:09 PM

100% right. It isn't against any law to take pictures of anything outside. Unless you have private property and have a gate leading to your neighborhood or something. But if you're in a regular suburban neighborhood Google does NOT need permission to take pictures.  People can legally take pictures of you while you're in public.  I can only think of that being illegal is if you have a restraining order against such a person. But yes Google knows what they are doing.

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It doesn't bother me. Whats the chances of someone looking at your house on Google street view planning to rob it. It's not like it's live so they can study your patterns.

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Dorkstar replied on Sat, Dec 1 2012 11:24 PM

This article is almost 4 years old, let it die.

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