Essay on Google's Orkut in Brazil

710 Words Oct 29th, 2013 3 Pages
Case Study: Google's Orkut in Brazil

1. How do social networking sites work? What has contributed to their immense popularity?

It is a data platform on a website that enables people to exchange information about themselves on the internet. Users are able to create their individual profile and to communicate with friends or new people. It's popular because it helps people meet others with similar interests and similar tastes. It creates virtual communities among people who want to connect with each other, but might never meet without the mediation of the networking site.

2. Why was Orkut so successful in Brazil? What caused problems later?

Google was already well known and had very good reputation in Brazil. Besides, it
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and Brazil.

3. Why did Google refuse to hand over Orkut user data? How should Internet companies and particularly those with social networking sites decide whether or not to share user information with the legal authorities

Google, being an American company, was used to stricter U.S. laws protecting user privacy. Therefore, they were unwilling to share data without the consent of users. They also respected Brazilian law less that U.S. law. Because Orkut's user data was stored in the U.S., Google treated this data as if it were subject to U.S. rather than Brazilian jurisdiction, needing a court order from a U.S. judge to be released. This may have been an excuse, more than a real reason, for Google to withhold the data. The threat of the company was, that if it surrenders and shares the data with the Brazilian law, other less democratic governments will request for data, as well.

Though private information of users should be stringent assured , there are cases where Internet companies should surrender requests for data from legal authorities. This is necessary in order to protect innocent users of the site and the population as a whole. By protecting child pornographers, Google was, in effect, endanger children. When not sharing data violates rights that supersede the rights to privacy, such as the rights of a child to not be abused. In such cases, companies has to estimate about what is more important, to protect a child or to

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