TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Google Formally Rejects Justice Subpoena for Information

Re: Google Formally Rejects Justice Subpoena for Information

Henry (
Mon, 20 Feb 2006 07:32:16 +0200

Some interesting semantics going on here. When I first saw the headline,
I thought 'What?!?' I mean, a subpoena is a court order, signed by a
judge, commanding you to appear in court and/or produce certain
evidence. How can Google just 'reject' such an order? (They can't.) What
they can do -- and, apparently, what they are doing -- is _appeal_
against the order.

>> Google also said in a filing in U.S. District Court for the Northern
>> District of California

This is perhaps just sloppiness on the part of the Reuters reporter
and laxity in his sub-editor(s). But then, in the remainder of the
article, this fast-and-loose use of terminology continues. Some

> the government demand

> compel Google to hand over

> a bid by the Justice Department

> opposing the U.S. government request

> complied with the Justice Department demand

> the request for ... data

> the U.S. government's request

> the Justice Department request

> fighting the U.S. government request

> the Justice Department motion to compel Google

I suppose that 'demand' and 'compel' are connotatively similar, as
perhaps are 'bid', 'request' and 'motion'. The last time I checked,
however, 'request' and 'demand' meant rather different things. These
terms can't be mixed up, higgledy-piggledy, just to avoid repetition
-- like a student with a thesaurus.



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