Respite for Google
Last September, the Ninth Circuit upheld the District Court’s ruling after Google filed an appeal. This week’s ruling reaffirms that opinion.
However, it also deletes a significant portion of the earlier ruling in which the court held that unencrypted communications sent from or received by an open Wi-Fi network was not generally accessible to the public. The court also granted a Google request for a rehearing of the case.
Daniel Castro, a senior analyst with the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF), said the amendment is significant for Google.
”It’s fairly rare for a court to significantly modify a previous opinion,” Castro said. With the appellate court’s first ruling, Google almost did not have a case. This week’s opinion “opens the door for them to continue to argue the case.”
A Google spokesperson expressed muted satisfaction over the developments. “We’re pleased that the Court granted our request for a rehearing and revised its opinion. But we are disappointed that the order was not completely reversed and are considering our next steps.”
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