In Argentina, controversies against the search engines Google and Yahoo! arose in civil lawsuits brought by different ‘celebrities’ and well‐known public figures for violation of their honor and privacy, or for unauthorized use of their names and images on websites with sexual or pornographic content or with offers of sexual services. Da Cunha is just a sample of over a hundred decisions that all apply very similar arguments to very similar fact patterns: a plaintiff who is famous or well-known had his or her image used without authorization by potentially offensive websites operated by third parties unaffiliated with Google and Yahoo. These operators were not named as parties to the lawsuits. Rather, the plaintiffs brought suits against the search engines for facilitating access to the unauthorized content. The National Court of Appeals has applied Article 1109 of the Argentinean Civil Code, analyzing the conduct of the search engine and considering that a search engine could be held liable for third party content when it becomes aware of the infringing content and does not remove it.
Appeal to this decision is now pending before the National Supreme Court of Justice. Da Cunha appealed the portion of the Appelate Court's decision stating that the ISP can only be held liable after having received a complaint. The Attorney General of the Nation sustained in an official opinion that the so-called Campillay doctrine should be applied to this case (see above). The Attorney General added that carrying out Da Cunha’s request would be a prior restraint to speech, which is illegal.
Topic, claim, or defense
Defamation or Personality Rights
Privacy or Data Protection
Highest Domestic/National (including State) Court
Type of service provider
Search Engine or Index
Trigger for OSP obligations
Type of law
General effect on immunity
General intermediary liability model
Takedown/Act Upon Knowledge (Includes Notice and Takedown)