Project Goliath Mississippi Google lawsuit

The story of Goliath continues today, and this time it looks like Google is going on the offensive. The Verge is reporting that Google has today filed a lawsuit against one Mississippi State Attorney General Jim Hood, who has largely been at the center of the Goliath controversy. He has recently been facing scrutiny over his deep involvement with the MPAA’s efforts to take a stand against Google, and now Google is taking a stand of its own.

This news comes following our report from yesterday that Google had taken to its public policy blog to respond to the recent revelations and publicly ask why it is that the MPAA seems to secretly want to revive previous SOPA legislation. The company even took to Twitter to dub the MPAA’s seeming attempt to revive SOPA through non-legislative means as #ZombieSOPA, and put a page online asking the public to help kill it.

Today, on that same blog post, the company came out to say that they’re now asking a federal court to set aside a 79-page subpoena delivered by Hood, which Google believes violates many laws. But Google also wants to make it clear that going with this option was its last resort, and is only doing so now after spending “years of efforts” to explain the merits of its position:

Because Attorney General Hood’s 79-page subpoena constitutes an unjustified attack that violates well-established U.S. laws governing Internet platforms and online intermediaries, we are today asking a federal court to set that subpoena aside (our brief is here). We are also asking those with a hand in this campaign to preserve all relevant documents.  We regret having to take this matter to court, and we are doing so only after years of efforts to explain both the merits of our position and the extensive steps we’ve taken on our platforms.

Google’s anti-piracy provisions violate a Mississippi consumer protection law, according to the subpoena in question. Delivered on October 27th, 2014, Google believes the subpoena is an attempt to get them to block sites that infringe on various copyrighst, but the Mountain View company says that it’s protected by the first amendment and other federal laws. Google is also asking the court to stop Hood from being able to file any new additional charges.

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Stephen Hall

Stephen is Growth Director at 9to5. If you want to get in touch, follow me on Twitter. Or, email at stephen (at) 9to5mac (dot) com, or an encrypted email at hallstephenj (at) protonmail (dot) com.