Woman Sues Google for Walking Directions After Being Hit by a Car

It’s one thing to read stories about people who blithely follow their navigation systems and end up driving into a river or off a cliff; the driver feels stupid, the rest of us have a good laugh and mutter something about remembering to use common sense as well. The story of the woman who is suing Google because the pedestrian directions on her Blackberry instructed her to walk onto a busy highway, where she was struck by a car, is another. (She’s suing the driver too.) Now it’s serious. Psychologically speaking, it’s hard to go against instructions issued by an authority, even if that authority is your smartphone; it’s more than just blind trust. There’s a reason, in other words, for Google’s disclaimer on its pedestrian directions; other map sites have them too. According to the plaintiff, Ms. Rosenberg, though, that disclaimer doesn’t appear on the Blackberry version. It’ll be interesting to see how this one turns out. Via GIS Lounge and Slashdot.

Update: CNet’s coverage is worth a read.