Google’s bullying video convictions overruled

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The convictions of three Google executives charged over a video on one of the internet giant’s sites showing a disabled teen being bullied have been overturned by an Italian appeals court.

Google called yesterday’s ruling “a total victory.”

A lower court in 2010 held the executives criminally responsible for the posting of the video.

The verdict raised concerns that internet platforms could be forced to police their content, contrasting European privacy concerns with the freewheeling nature of the internet.

Google said it removed the video in question within two hours of being notified by authorities.

The appellate ruling in Milan throws out the convictions against Google’s global privacy counsel Peter Fleischer, its senior vice president and chief legal officer David Drummond and retired chief financial officer George Reyes.

The three were convicted of privacy violations for a 2006 video posted on Google Video, a video-sharing service Google ran before the company acquired YouTube later that year.

None of the executives charged in the case were in any way involved in the posting of the video and Google said they took it down within two hours of being notified by authorities.

Google, in its final arguments noted 72 hours-worth of video is posted on YouTube every minute.