According to a report in a local UK newspaper, the MK News, it seems that Google Street View is not welcome in the affluent English village of Broughton in Buckinghamshire. Apparently concerned about the potential for criminals intent on breaking into their houses, residents of one street which has already suffered a number of burglaries in recent weeks, decided to take direct action when they spotted the distinctive Google camera van in town. They got together and formed a human chain in order to block the road through the village and effectively prevent Google from capturing the images it was scheduled to take that day.
Having already captured images of 25 British cities and gone live last month, Google Street View is currently touring the UK in order to add smaller towns and villages to the service.
As DaniWeb reported at the time, there have already been plenty of complaints that the face and vehicle registration number filtering software was not working properly and the Information Commissioner's Office has vowed to investigate any complaints of invasion of privacy matters. Perhaps the fact that the ICO also made it very clear that it was satisfied that adequate safeguards had been put in place by Google to minimise any privacy risk has been partly to blame for the distinctly unusual direct action that was taken by this particular bunch of concerned Brits.
One Broughton resident told the Telegraph newspaper that ran outside to tell the Google Street View van driver that he was "invading our privacy" and "also facilitating crime." Police were also called, but by the time they arrived at the scene the mob had dispersed and the van had retreated.
As we go to press there is no word from Google as to when, or if, the van will be returning to Broughton.