Google will have to pay formula one driver Rubens Barrichello half a million dollars in damages because it hosted fake profiles of him on social networking site Orkut.
According to motorsport.com a court in Sao Paolo, Brazil, ordered Google - which owns Orkut - to pay $500,000 damages but this could rise to $700,000, because there could be an extra daily fine. The case began in July 2006.
Social networking site Twitter is trialing ways to verify accounts to prevent people tweeting in the name of others. St Louis Cardinals baseball team manager Tony La Russa filed a lawsuit against Twitter over fake tweets made in his name.
Google said in a statement that it will appeal. “We would first like to clarify that this is only an initial judgement and we look forward to the reconsideration of this decision on appeal by the Court of Appeals.
“Mr Rubens Barrichello is a public figure, and as such is subject to both the positive and negative expression of public opinion. In this sense, Google reaffirms that we are not responsible for any injury to Mr Barrichello's public image and we believe that a better solution will be affirmed upon the definitive and final judgement of the case by the appellate courts."