The High Court in Catalonia orders Google to delete independence vote app

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Catalonia

The High Court has also ordered Google to block any applications associated with or developed by the On Votar 1 Oct email address.

Catalonia is going through some tough times right now as the autonomous community seeks independence from Spain. The battle for independence is now reaching the doors of tech giant Google as a High Court has ordered the deletion of an app from its Play Store. The app in question (On Votar 1-Oct) was reportedly being used but separatists in Catalonia to organize people ahead of the vote.

On Saturday, Guardia Civil officers raided the Catalan government’s telecommunications and information technology center, Joan Maria Piqué, the international communications director for the government of Catalonia, told CNN. The raid was intended to stop the use of vote-counting software linked to Sunday’s referendum, Piqué said, adding that the Catalan government has an alternative to the software. A day earlier, a Spanish court ordered Google to remove a voting location app from its Play Store, claiming it was helping Catalan separatists organize in advance of the vote.

The High Court has also ordered Google to block any applications associated with or developed by the On Votar 1 Oct email address. The government of Catalonia is expected to move forward with the vote for independence which the Spanish government is calling illegal. Reuters was unable to get in touch with Google Spain for comment. It is unknown to us if Google has complied with the Spanish government’s request. Android users do have the ability to sideload applications to their phones, so even if Google removes the app, it could still be widely available. Users would only need to circulate the APK file and allow third-party installation of software on their devices. It will be interesting to see if Google does comply with this order.

What do you think of the High Court in Catalonia ordering Google to remove On Votar 1 Oct? Let us know what you think in the comments below, or on Google+, Twitter, or Facebook.

  Source: Reuters  Source: CNN
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