Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
The Courts It's funny.  Laugh. The Internet

Irish Judge Orders 'The Internet' To Delete Video 243

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the when-idiots-and-networks-collide dept.
New submitter edanto writes "A young Irish man wrongly accused of jumping from a taxi without paying the fare has secured a judgement from an Irish court ordering the video removed from the entire Internet. Experts from Google, Youtube, Facebook, and others must tell the court in two weeks if this is technically possible. The thing is, the video is accurate, it is only a comment that wrongly identified Eoin McKeogh as the fare-jumper in the video that is inaccurate. It's not clear if the judge has made any orders about the comment."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Irish Judge Orders 'The Internet' To Delete Video

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 16, 2013 @12:38PM (#43742105)

    Stupid judge, you can't order that, you ignorant ninny...

    By the powers vested in me, by myself, I hereby order you (the ninny) to stop breathing now and forever. You may be using oxygen I'll need later in my life.
    It's only wasted on you.

    • by Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @12:56PM (#43742321)

      Google and them do a lot of business through Ireland, it might not be so easy for them to just ignore an order from an Irish judge.

      • by asmkm22 (1902712)

        I doubt Google is concerned about any political fallout in Ireland, even after than stop laughing at this request. Ireland has a crappy enough job market as it is, without punishing the companies who are there for something like this. They'd be shooting themselves in the foot.

      • It's not about Google ignoring the order. Google could diligently remove all copies of the video from their servers. They can't remove it from mine, or yours. For that, the judge would have to order me and you to remove it, and not being under his jurisdiction, I expect I could ignore him with impunity (as long as I don't travel to .ie ever).

      • Google like many others were using Ireland as a tax dodge and as we have seen in the USA what happens when you put the corps in the driver seat now Ireland has a collapsing economy and companies like Google are slowly but surely bailing like rats from a sinking ship.

        This is of course the reason why free trade and globalism will cause a worldwide economic collapse, it forces every country on the planet to be as weak and powerless as the most broken third world country because thanks to the ability to send a trillion dollars around the world in seconds there really is no loyalty to ones home anymore.

        Our founding fathers saw this coming all those years ago, too bad we didn't listen. Thomas Jefferson: "Merchants have no country. The mere spot they stand on does not constitute so strong an attachment as that from which they draw their gains."

        • Really? The IT sector is booming in Ireland, along with numerous other sectors like pharma and agriculture. Most of the unemployment is in the construction and related sectors, like furniture shops, and they should never have been allowed to balloon to the prominence they reached, the banking regulator authorising mortgages was imo deliberately asleep at the wheel. And even with all that mess the country would still be in great shape right now if the minister for finance at the time (now dead) hadn't issue

        • by St.Creed (853824) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @03:48PM (#43744241)

          Thomas Jefferson was wrong, in this case, as several economists argued later. Merchants without a country tend to fare really bad when the merchants that do have ties with the rulers (or are directly in control of) another country make laws banning the first group from doing business in the country of the second group. If the first group of homeless merchants don't have strong ties with rulers somewhere they're up shit creek without a paddle.

          While multinationals often have their "head office" in a tax haven for tax reasons, the *real* headquarters is always located in a spot close to political power, where the owners of said company have cultural, personal and financial ties with the people having political power.

      • by Hatta (162192)

        "Google and them" is not "the internet".

      • by DragonTHC (208439)

        Here's the real problem though: The Internet is sovereign. Granted parts of it are controlled by certain governments. The DNS roots are controlled by the U.S. But The Internet, as a whole, is sovereign. It is the manifestation of the democratic will of the people of planet Earth. And One does not simply delete something from the Internet. The Internet is a self-healing, electric hydra. Once you upload something, It's there forever. Ireland does not have jurisdiction over the Internet any more than the U.S.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Now if that judge was located in the US, then he could have had it deleted from the entire Internet.

    • Stupid judge, you can't order that, you ignorant ninny...

      Well, actually given that he's Irish and all the tax dodging companies seem to like residing in Ireland (don't you know, google doesn't actually do any business in England!), he actually has a measure of power over a considerable number of large companies.

      Well, that'll serve them right.

    • by Sir_Sri (199544)

      Any company that does business in europe would have to try and find a way to comply though.

      And the thing is, if most instances of 'the video' are actually links to a small number of hosted copies of the video on say google and facebook servers then it may not actually be that hard to hunt down on the big companies servers.

      One of the things Megaupload did was it ran some sort of a hash on uploaded files, and if they already had the file they just created a new symbolic link to the same file. I would not be

    • by Jahta (1141213) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @01:55PM (#43742975)

      Stupid judge, you can't order that, you ignorant ninny...

      Sadly this is not that uncommon. In the UK last year there was a spate of so-called "super injunctions" being issued to various celebs; these were meant to not only prohibit publishing details of the subject under injunction but also any reporting of the mere fact that an injunction had been granted.

      At one stage the High Court granted a permanent injunction against the "whole world" to prevent details of a married celebrity’s affair from being revealed (Super injunctions and the law [stephensons.co.uk]). Much hilarity ensued.

    • the Webizens hereby order The Law to get a clue, cease and desist from idiocy. if we hold you in contempt, your face will be pasted on millions of cat pictures. woot.

  • Quick! (Score:5, Funny)

    by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @12:38PM (#43742111)

    If you've got a Microsoft Surface, download the video from YouTube - pronto!

  • by i_want_you_to_throw_ (559379) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @12:39PM (#43742123) Homepage Journal
    3...2...1...
    • But why? It's not like it's some celebrity using the judicial system as a bully. And there's not really any amusing or interesting content to the video. Is it just cause we don't like judicial orders here?

      • by Jawnn (445279) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @01:00PM (#43742367)

        But why? It's not like it's some celebrity using the judicial system as a bully. And there's not really any amusing or interesting content to the video. Is it just cause we don't like judicial orders here?

        True, but there's no denying that that video will be viewed a few more times than it would have been before the poor lad went to court to bitch about it. What he should have done is fire back on Facebook, Twitter, and various other social media. You know where all the people who care about useless shit like this will see it and know he's innocent.

    • by Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @12:54PM (#43742299)

      Also a testament to the stupidity of mob justice. Before it emerged that this guy had been wrongly identified, you had people posting his home address on busily trafficked sites, his phone number, metaphorically throwing nooses over lamp posts, the works. Afterwards, the same people were still trying to pin something on him somehow because he had the temerity to make them look like trigger happy vigilante clowns without a clue, which is what they are.

      I don't blame him for trying to strike back through the legal system but since the video doesn't in fact identify him I'm not sure why he wants it pulled down. Renamed maybe might be a better option.

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Sounds like they should go after these vigilantes instead. That's one area where I'd fully support "making strong examples of." Internet vigilantism has only started to make an impact but will get tragically big real quick, it needs to get nipped in the bud asap.

        • by ultranova (717540) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @01:52PM (#43742941)

          Internet vigilantism has only started to make an impact but will get tragically big real quick, it needs to get nipped in the bud asap.

          Internet vigilantism can't be nipped as long as "tough on crime" remains popular, since it's the same thing in different guise: people like letting their sadistic impulses out every now and then, and if they can pretend they're doing it for the sake of justice it's all the more enjoyable.

      • by Rhacman (1528815)
        Actually, I think it is brilliant to try to get the video pulled down. The fact that the ruling is absurd only brings more attention to the fact that he was wrongly accused.
    • by ZombieBraintrust (1685608) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @01:03PM (#43742395)
      Except he is innocent. So the Streisand effect is a good thing for him if it gets the word out that it wasn't him in the video.
  • by i kan reed (749298) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @12:39PM (#43742129) Homepage Journal

    Judges can order this sort of thing. It's effectiveness will come down to whether anyone cares enough to re-upload it multiple times in multiple places. The judge is in the wrong for misunderstanding the source of the slander, but I'm not sure what that means for "my rights online"

    • by pla (258480)
      O'm not sure what that means for "my rights online"

      It means that we have yet another shining example of the last bastion of justice in a 1st-world legal system demonstrating their complete incompetence when it comes to making decisions about the most powerful tool ever devised by humans.

      Not only does it show an outright scary lack of understanding of how the internet works (in the organizational sense), but it also proves him as so out of touch with the reality of the modern world that he doesn't even
      • by Muros (1167213)

        Not only does it show an outright scary lack of understanding of how the internet works (in the organizational sense), but it also proves him as so out of touch with the reality of the modern world that he doesn't even recognize the sort of memes we pretty much take for granted - In this case, the "Streisand effect".

        Thats a bit unfair really. A lot of older people will have no idea about recent memes on the internet, despite being quite knowledgeable about computers. I know people who have worked in IT since they started out repairing mechanical counting machines, and if I ever need help with a tits-up RS-6000 I'll go straight to them for help. I doubt they'd know what the Streisand effect refers to. Why should a judge?

  • by jwthompson2 (749521) * <(james) (at) (plainprograms.com)> on Thursday May 16, 2013 @12:40PM (#43742133) Homepage
    At least the court has asked it it's even technically feasible; good luck with that.
  • . . . . .by GUARANTEEING that the video in question will be mirrored, and parodied, etc.

    Somebody obviously knows NOTHING about how the 'net works.. . This is, after all. . . . serious business. [knowyourmeme.com].

  • Which one of the Internets does he mean?

  • by Anita Coney (648748) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @12:42PM (#43742167) Homepage

    By the power invested by my lion tamer hat, I order unicorns to stop farting rainbows.

    • by msauve (701917)
      If you stop rainbows from farting, where will Skittles come from?
      • by xevioso (598654)

        Rainbows don't fart. Unicorns fart rainbows. Read the post again, please.

        • by msauve (701917)
          Whoosh.

          It's ambiguous. I choose to read it as the unicorns are ordered to stop the farting rainbows. Rainbows do fart, just watch a Skittles ad.
        • by ArsonSmith (13997)

          Ok, re-read, got the message that the unicorns need to stop the farting rainbows.

    • By the power invested by my lion tamer hat, I order unicorns to stop farting rainbows.

      That would at least make sense, as that is a serious public safety issue. [youtube.com]

  • There should really be a authority that can remove clueless, bonehead judges from the "entire internet".
  • by Sarten-X (1102295) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @12:48PM (#43742231) Homepage

    Sure, the obvious spin the summary evokes is that the judge is one of those numbskull government bureaucrats, who thinks the Internet has a central authority that can respond to such requests. Let's all laugh at the silly judge and reinforce our anti-government hivemind.

    On the other hand, the judge likely ordered that the video be taken down, knowing perfectly well that it's impossible to be removed completely. However, those big companies make up the majority of the video's audience, so if they take down the video (and its associated accusation of Mr. McKeogh), the effect is to substantially reduce the harm to Mr. McKeogh's reputation... which is exactly the goal. Since the ruling is in Ireland, where those companies keep their double-Irish tax avoidance entities, the companies will of course want to stay in the good grace of the Irish courts.

    • by almitydave (2452422) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @01:02PM (#43742383)

      Except that even if it's completely removed once, it will resurface widely and immediately. If reducing the harm to Mr. McKeogh's reputation is the priority, they should leave all known copies up, but add a note that the person is NOT Mr. McKeogh, possibly with a link to this case.

      I'm sure the judge is not a numbskull, but the whole problem is not the video, but the misinformation accompanying the video.

      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        I'm sure the judge is not a numbskull, but the whole problem is not the video, but the misinformation accompanying the video.

        If the judge knew that the misinformation was the problem, and he ordered the video taken down, then he is either a numbskull or evil, in that he is abusing his power to attempt to unnecessarily suppress information that does not belong to him. There's no third way.

        • by Sarten-X (1102295)

          ...Or he's perfectly correct. [c2.com]

          Since the defendants in the suit (the big companies hosting the video and comments) are operating in his court's jurisdiction, he has the legal right to order them to remove the lies and obviously-false information linking McKeogh to the crime he didn't commit. Since those lies and false accusations are causing unjust harm to McKeogh, the judge has the moral right to order them removed, as well.

      • by Sarten-X (1102295)

        How well would that work, though? By now, the comments on the videos apparently have McKeogh's home address, phone number, and other personal details. A small note of sanity won't stop the self-righteous asshats of the Internet from making this man's life hell. Even through this discussion, there's already many commentors promising to perpetuate the man's suffering, just out of spite for being told that not to libel others.

        The problem is the Greater Internet Fuckwad Theory. Someone's personal life has been

        • How well would that work, though? By now, the comments on the videos apparently have McKeogh's home address, phone number, and other personal details. A small note of sanity won't stop the self-righteous asshats of the Internet from making this man's life hell. Even through this discussion, there's already many commentors promising to perpetuate the man's suffering, just out of spite for being told that not to libel others.

          And these people would then be liable for whatever legal recourse there is for online stalking/harassment, and deleting the video probably wouldn't curb that much anyway.

          The problem is the Greater Internet Fuckwad Theory. Someone's personal life has been severely harmed by the information these companies continue to publish. When they're asked to stop publishing such lies, the schmucks crawl out to protest this affront to their ability to screw up others' lives, and they promise to just screw up the man's life even worse than before.

          This is not civilization. This is unbridled sadism masquerading as vigilantism.

          And by "shmucks" are you referring to Google/Facebook/et al., or the people actually doing the harassing? I just don't think there's a feasible way, nor should there be, to prevent all future potential harassment. The GIFT (ironic, heh) is an unfortunate but necessary by-product of a free internet.

  • by Aristos Mazer (181252) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @12:49PM (#43742239)

    So, if there's some video I don't like on the Internet, I just go there and add a comment saying that it is this Irish dude doing whatever it is that is in the video? I can think of lots of embarrassing videos that various celebrities would like to see go away. Just add "Hey! That's Eoin McKeogh!" to the video and then sue in Ireland.

    This is just one of many problems I see with this ruling. It just was the most interesting one.

  • by fisted (2295862) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @12:53PM (#43742287)
    technically it's not that difficult. There are engineers who know which screws to remove, where the hooks and claws sit, etc, in order to disassemble the Internet and pull out that video. It's a matter of cost, mainly, and while it is a daunting task already to dismantle the machine, it's even more difficult to properly put it back together in the end.
    I wouldn't be the one to risk that, tbh. What if you, say, forget a gear, or mismatch the pressure release valve?
    • by Amouth (879122)

      It's simple just screw up the global BGP tables and no one will be able to access it. no where did is see where the order required zero impact to anything else.

      • by gman003 (1693318)

        Better solution: Disconnect the internet connections of anyone involved in the case, *including* the judge. As far as they'll be able to tell, the video was removed.

    • by Solandri (704621)
      No, no, no. You know the joke about asking a mathematician to corral a dozen sheep inside a hula hoop? The mathematician thinks about it for a minute, then steps inside the hula hoop and declares that his side is the outside. That's what we need to do here. Just cut off the guy's Internet access forever. Then he won't know that this is going on, and everything will be just fine.
    • by jittles (1613415)

      What if you, say, forget a gear, or mismatch the pressure release valve?

      I'm pretty sure there is content on the internet that is specifically geared towards pressure release valves that go both ways...

  • by ewhac (5844) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @12:54PM (#43742311) Homepage Journal

    Experts from Google, Youtube, Facebook, and others must tell the court in two weeks if this is technically possible.

    No.

    This has been another edition of Simple Answers to Simple Questions: Simpleton Edition.

    Schwab

  • by gmuslera (3436) on Thursday May 16, 2013 @01:00PM (#43742369) Homepage Journal
    As that judge seem to be stranded in 1990 or so, we can use him to send messages to the past and avoid a lot of catastrophes.
  • Suppose the judge ordered the OWNER of the video to remove it from the internet. Now that poor chump would have to run around sending takedown notices for those violating his copyright. See see see? Now he's not outside his jurisdiction and can plausibly get it removed from the major portions of the net by offloading the pain onto the video owner.
  • Irish judge thinking he can censor whole Internet spend too much time in Irish pub.

  • Methinks the judge may have little understanding of both how the internet works, and what his jurisdiction actually is.

    If a judge in Ireland believes he somehow has the authority (let alone the technical ability) to order this, he's grossly mis-informed.

    He can make rulings on what happens in Ireland, but for the rest of the world ... well, Iran can make all of the demands they want about taking stuff off the internet too, but nobody will care either.

    This basically demonstrates he doesn't understand either t

  • The judge knows that it's impossible to remove all copies from the Internet but he has ordered Google etc to work on the problem and demonstrate that they have spent some effort in trying as punishment for not being helpful earlier when the plaintiff asked them to clear his name.
  • People of Earth, who by their access to the Internet are arguably connected to the internet are served with a court order to forget this information.

  • I think that the judge is perfectly conscious of the impossibility of removing all copies of the video from the internet, but the young man made the request knowing that it would get all this attention, and help him to clear his name.

    When this incident happened, it was a huge new story (in Ireland at least) and a fair few people that I know were unaware that his name was cleared, when the dust settled. This, to me, seems like an effective use of a modified Striesand effect.

    • I think King Canute - IIRC - was demonsrating to his advisors the limits of his power and knew full well he wasn't going to order the tide to go in or out ;)
  • This could get interesting... With some 3rd-world nothing of a country, they'd just be adversarial and pull out of the country if things got bad.

    But since Ireland is the EU tax haven for these companies, how far are they willing to go to humor the Irish courts and keep their billions of dollars each year safely out of the hands of the governments they rightly belong to?

    I'm betting Google is only too happy to be incredibly evil, to keep their tax haven happy with them...

  • It's quite impossible to delete anything from the Internet. Once it is uploaded, it is there forever. I read that on the Internet, so it must be true.

    One possibility exists though: all you need to do is intentionally clog things up, or maybe install a couple of clamps. That way, you can isolate the video and it will not be able to flow anywhere.

    After all, the Internet is just a series of tubes, right?

  • Now that this video will uploaded to youtube, usenet, bittorrent, file hosting until the end of time, please ensure to label and put the incorrect name "Eoin McKeogh " in all filenames, labels and descriptions. Also address each post to the attention of Mr Justice Michael Peart. thank you.

  • by eyenot (102141) <eyenot@hotmail.com> on Thursday May 16, 2013 @03:27PM (#43744051) Homepage

    Should be titled:

    "Decent Man vs. The Douchebag Mouthbreathing Adult Children Of the Internet And Their Coddling Surrogate-Parent Corporate 1% Elite"

The one day you'd sell your soul for something, souls are a glut.

Working...