April 21, 2010 By News Report
Earlier this week, Google launched a new tool that maps government requests for user data and requests for the search engine to remove content. In the company's typical fashion, the tool was made available with little fanfare.
Called simply Government requests, the map spans the globe and offers insight into which governments are requesting user data and which are asking Google to remove content, which is broken down by the company's various properties such as Blogger, AdWords and YouTube.
Presently the map incorporates data from July 1, 2009 through Dec. 31, 2009. Most developed nations are featured, with the notable exception of China. Google cites its ongoing quarrel with Chinese government officials over censorship and state secrets as the reason data from that country is not currently mapped.
Brazil, Germany and India top the list for the most content removal requests. According to Google, this is due to the popularity of its social network orkut and in Germany, due in part to laws forbidding Nazi propaganda.
Brazil, the U.S. and the U.K. were tops for the number of user data requests. The majority of these requests come from law enforcement agencies.
The number of both removal requests and data requests can be found by clicking on the country's icon. The number of removal requests is shown based on each Google property, while only the total number of data requests is provided, with no additional information available.
All over the country, community leaders are looking to boost economic development through various initiatives. One key element in many of those initiatives is the use of information technology. When local governments build IT infrastructure, create e-government applications, assist high-tech startups or otherwise focus on technology, they create conditions that draw businesses to their communities and help retain skilled workers. This paper discusses and provides examples of these various ways local government can use technology to ultimately make a community more attractive to businesses, visitors and residents.