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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Google Maps Says It's Not to Blame for Pedestrian Hit by Car

Posted By on Wed, Mar 2, 2011 at 12:12 PM

Google the phrase

"common sense"

​If Google maps led you off a cliff, would you jump?

Well, if you did make the plunge and got hurt in the process, the Bay Area media giant claims it wouldn't be at fault. Google is finding itself at the center of a bizarre and never ending lawsuit where a pedestrian is blaming the company's mapping device for leading her astray -- right into the path of an oncoming car.

Last year, Lauren Rosenberg sued Google after she was hit by a car as she walked across a highway in Park City, Utah after consulting Google Maps on her BlackBerry.

Now, Google's lawyers in San Francisco have filed a claim in Utah Superior Court, asking a judge to dismiss the case. Google is using the First Amendment as its defense, saying Rosenberg has "presented no plausible rationale for treating Google like an expert advisor."

Google claims that the company is the publisher of the information and cannot be held accountable for the accuracy of the content. Google also asserted that Rosenberg -- who is seeking $100,000 in damages -- walked into oncoming traffic at 6 a.m. after a long night of drinking, according to the claim filed recently.

More importantly, even if Google was responsible for the accuracy of the information, it's really up to the pedestrian to watch out for cars when following the suggested route, Google's lawyers argue.

"It is not reasonably foreseeable that someone who obtains a suggested

walking route from Google Maps will abandon common sense and walk in

front of oncoming traffic while inebriated," defense lawyer Blaine J. Benard wrote in the brief.

In short: Common sense isn't a landmark on Google Maps.

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About The Author

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert was the Online News Editor for SF Weekly from 2010 to 2015. She's a Texas native and has a closet full of cowboy boots to prove it.


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