German appeals court says Google doesn't have to check links

A top German appeals court has ruled Google does not have to check the content of pages it links to for possible legal violations before providing search results.

The dpa news agency reported the Federal Court of Justice ruled Tuesday that Google does, however, have to react when "concrete evidence" of violations of law, such as child pornography or acts of violence, are reported.

The court upheld a lower ruling in a case brought by a couple who argued Google should be responsible for blocking links to sites where they said they were defamed.

Presiding Judge Gregor Galke says to compel Google and others to check every link would paralyze the service in practical terms.

Galke says "a general responsibility to regulate is incompatible with the function of search engines."