Search Engines Have Same Speech Rights as The New York Times, Says Google Report

Thursday May 10th 2012 by Staff

A law professor argues that search is a form of media and freedom of speech should apply.

PaidContent: In a report commissioned by Google, UCLA law professor Eugene Volokh argues that search engine results are protected by the First Amendment and should enjoy free speech just like any other form of media. “Google, Microsoft’s Bing, Yahoo! Search and other search engine companies are rightly seen as media enterprises, much as the New York Times Company or CNN are media enterprises” and deserve the same protections, he wrote.

U.S. courts have long upheld the rights of newspapers and other media outlets to refuse advertising from anyone they wish. Equating search with media could have implications for current antitrust investigations into Google's manipulations of its search engine rankings.

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