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Google's Annymous Complaint about eBay-Busted!

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Google's Annymous Complaint about eBay-Busted!

Postby Alan Petersen » Fri May 30, 2008 5:30 pm

Google note to self:

When posting an anonymous complaint online don't use "Google" as the name of your word doc to submit the anonymous report.

The submission in question is a 38-page critique of the eBay plan which it calls "anti-competitive", arguing that there would be no net public benefit if eBay were given the green light to proceed.

The digital "fingerprint" that links Google to the submission posted on the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) website was discovered by David Bromage, a disgruntled eBay user and model train enthusiast from Canberra.

He examined the hidden so-called meta data in the downloaded submission which was posted as a PDF document and found this nugget: "Microsoft Word - 204481916_1_ACCC Submission by Google re eBay Public _2_.DOC".

Translated it means that the PDF was created from a Microsoft Word document with the filename "204481916_1_ACCC Submission by Google re eBay Public _2_.DOC".

A few hours after Bromage's discovery was posted on the AuctionBytes website yesterday, the PDF submission on the ACC site was taken down. It returned later on Thursday afternoon, this time without the incriminating meta data.

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Alan Petersen
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