Google Street View Germany was launched this morning after a soft start two weeks ago. It currently covers 20 larger cities in Germany – the screenshot above is from a street in Frankfurt where a friend used to live.
Over 244.000 Germans requested Google Germany to remove their property from being viewable via Google Street View, probably due to privacy concerns, and it is very likely that there will be more requests coming up to censor online street views like the one above. This process also can’t be revoked, so once the images have been altered, they can’t be set back.
While Germany isn’t the only country that has been having issues with Google regarding this service and how data was collected, I am in fact very upset about the stupidity and “privacy concerns” of my fellow citizens, especially when you’re confronted with such views like the one above. I call this “Verpixelungsfaschismus”, because there are many other occasions when Germans should imo protest against political and social changes and nothing happens, but then when it comes to such an unimportant thing like Google Street View that will – at best – only contribute to marketing the beautiful parts of this country, almost a quarter million (!) house owners protest against a photograph of their property being published online. And it’s not that Google is the first provider to offer such a service.
Going by the criticism Google Street View encountered in many other European countries so far, I am only glad this isn’t a German-only thing. In other EU countries, this may be even worse.