Thursday, July 17, 2014

French Blogger Found Guilty By Judge Of Being Too Popular

A French judge who really doesn't understand how Google searches work at all, has fined a French blogger, essentially for the crime of being too popular.
A French judge ruled against a blogger, essentially
because she was ranked too high in Google searches for his taste. 

The problem, according to the BBC, is blogger Caroline Doudet wrote a scathing, negative review of a restaurant in her blog. The restauranteur said the review was hurting his business.

The judge said that since a Google search brings up Doudet's blog fourth from the top, and that her blog has 3,000 or so followers, she is popular and has influence.

Therefore, she should be fined for the negative review, said the judge.

I doubt Doudet had much influence on how Google ranked the blog for searches, but that apparently is beside the point, if I'm reading the judge's "reasoning" right.

Doudet was fined about $2,000.

Doudet said that basically, the judge made it a crime to be ranked too high on a search engine. "What is perverse, is that we look for bloggers who are influential, but only if they are nice about people," she said.

The restaurant review has since been deleted, since Doudet said the whole thing has been too much of  hassle.

It sounds like in the judge's mind, you can be nasty to someone on line if nobody reads your stuff, but you can't if people actually do read what you write.

The restauranteur never denied the service at his restaurant fell short when Doudet visited, the problem was too many people were finding the negative review.

Yes, people write a whole lot of unfair things on line. Or they write things that are fair but negative.  And it's a problem for business owners.

But getting "help" for the problem by complaining somebody is too popular on line seems like it would backfire.

I kind of hope in this case it does.

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