Japanese court orders negative reviews to be deleted from Google Maps

10 Apr 2015

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A Japanese court has ordered Google to delete two critical customer reviews from its Google Maps service after a defamation suit was filed against the company by an undisclosed medical clinic.

The Chiba District Court today issued a preliminary injunction forcing Google to remove the reviews, despite neither of them violating its terms or policies.

The anonymous write-ups are said to express customers' negative experiences with the clinic. The lawsuit included a testimony from the doctor who dealt with the reviewers denying their claims.

In a statement given to TechCrunch, Google claimed it may appeal the ruling. “While we provide tools that allow business owners to respond to reviews, and we take down posts that violate our policies, we believe online reviews are a critical tool for people to give and read direct feedback about businesses,” the company said.

Japan flag image via Shutterstock

Dean is a freelance journalist and editor covering media.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com