Germans chuck eggs at Street View opt-outs

Posted by Emma Woollacott

German media are reporting that households which have opted to have their homes blurred on Street View have been pelted with eggs.

Apparently, several houses in Bergerhausen, a suburb of Essen, have been targeted. The vandals also taped notices to the houses' mailboxes reading 'Google's cool'.

Google has said it doesn't approve, although of course that doesn't rule out a rogue engineer as the culprit.

A spokesperson for the Essen police department told Deutsche Welle that the incident was recorded as a case of property damage. "We'll see if there were witnesses," he said. "We don't yet have any leads pointing to a perpetrator."

Street View is revealing Germany to be a far more quirky place than its reputation would lead one to expect. Images on the site include what appear to be a naked man climbing into the trunk of a car and the birth of a baby on the sidewalk. But around three percent of German households have opted out of having their homes shown on the site - indicating that somebody's going to need an awful lot of eggs if they plan to keep the protest up.

Rather pleasingly, Google's own Munich headquarters is itself blurred out on Street View, thanks to objections from another tenant in the building. Presumably troops of cleaners are now on red alert.

While we're on the subject of Google, has anyone else noticed that the escalating aggression between North and South Korea is centered on a small border island? Perhaps we should check whether Google Earth has got anything to do with the outbreak in hostilities. It wouldn't be the first time, after all...