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York council gets sniffy with Street View

Could have asked for permission to film

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York council is a bit miffed that Google's Street View spycars have hit the historic city's highways and byways without asking for permission to film, local paper The Press reports.

York Street View monitors have apparently been watching the Orwellian Opels doing their master's dark will over the past couple of weeks, prompting Privacy International director Simon Davies to declare: “It would have been nice and appropriate and perfectly legal for Google to go to the residents of York and ask their opinion on this, if for no other reason than to build trust.”

A City of York Council spokeswoman said: “As a rule of thumb, and out of general professional courtesy, we would normally expect organisations to contact us to seek permission to film in the city. They would also need special permission, and a permit, to use a vehicle for filming in the pedestrianised heart of the city. However, we are not aware of Google making any such requests.”

The spokeswoman added that York's city centre manager intends to contact Google and ask "what they were doing, where, when and why". The council will then determine if further action is necessary.

Google spokeswoman Laura Scott said the search monolith didn't know when York would be laid bare on the internet, explaining: "We are at the driving stage in Europe. Once we have all those European photos we will patch them together."

Well, we don't yet have a York Street View sighting on our splendid Spot-the-Snoopmobile mashup, but we do currently offer over 150 pics for your viewing pleasure:

View the Map (opens in a new window)

Keep those pics coming to me, right here, and remember to give the exact location. ®

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