Cat videos have much to do with many of our ills, and they've come up again in discussions various states are having about whether to preemptively ban Google Glass while driving. It was August 2013 when news reports began delving into potential bans and penalties in the US and UK for using Google Glass while driving. As specific states begin to draw hard lines and introduce legislation, Bloomberg reports that Google is ramping up its lobbying efforts to belay prohibitive rulings until government and authorities understand what the technology is and how it can be applied.

Gary Howell already knows how he feels. The Republican Delegate in West Virginia - who was already working on a bill last summer that got derailed by "procedural issues" - told Bloomberg, "You can be watching cat videos driving down the road and laughing at them. When you're rolling down the road in a ton-and-a-half of metal at 65 miles per hour, you can do some serious damage." Illinois, Delaware, Maryland, Missouri, New York, New Jersey and Wyoming are considering everything from bans to rules that will mandate the study of Glass before it gets approved for use while driving. With distracted driving still a big topic and lawmakers having a hard enough time with smartphones and OEM infotainment systems, it appears they don't even want to risk having to deal with another screen.

Google is said to have put its lobbyists in touch with regulators in Illinois, Delaware and Wyoming already. Observers, naturally, believe that the Mountain View company is trying to protect the potentially lucrative business of selling the $1,500 eyewear. Google's position is that Glass isn't yet widely available, so why the need to draft countermeasures? Google's case is weakened, however, by announcements from carmakers like Mercedes and Hyundai that are already promoting in-car integration. And seeing that the court cases and controversy have already commenced, it looks like everyone should simply settle in for what will likely be an expensive, and drawn out, fight.


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  • 41 Comments
      Essende
      • 9 Months Ago
      Isn't "lobbying" just another word for corruption as in paying someone off to pass certain (favorable) laws? And why is this still legal? As far as google is concerned, they better concentrate on autonomous cars, much safer way to push more of their advertisements down peoples throats...
        Rick C.
        • 9 Months Ago
        @Essende
        Good response somewhere above about lobbyists and what should be done to them.
      GoSpeedRacerGo
      • 9 Months Ago
      Forget that this is just another money grab by Google. Instead, let's assume the worst, that idiots will drive while watching videos, tweeting, updating Facebook, etc., because you know it'll happen. Why should we expect otherwise? Just because Google says so?
      Steve
      • 9 Months Ago
      Lobbying should be limited. It's bad for capitalism and it's worse for democracy
        creamwobbly
        • 9 Months Ago
        @Steve
        In the US, bribery is illegal, but bribery is defined in law as providing gifts to foreign government officials. In the UK, bribery is illegal, and bribery is defined in law as giving gifts to someone to change the outcome of some legal process. Good luck trying to get bribery laws changed here though.
      Bernard
      • 9 Months Ago
      This is definitely evil Google. Do you really want this blood on your hands?
      George Krpan
      • 9 Months Ago
      I can't fathom what Google is thinking with all the talk about distracted drivng. Could be that Google thinks that drivers will be LESS DISTRACTED with Google Glasses than with other devices. At any rate, it's the wrong message they're sending out to drivers that you can drive and use devices while drivng.
      zepeda1
      • 9 Months Ago
      Google could use this oportunity to get a lot of good press by stating the obvious - there are many way to enjoy Google Glass, but wearing them while driving isn't one of them. Sadly they vision on this seems to be obscured.
      SteveM
      • 9 Months Ago
      They should be banned while driving. Last thing people need is one more distraction. People will be paying more attention to the images in the glasses than what's in front of them. Maybe this is why Google's been working on autonomous cars?
      SquareFour
      • 9 Months Ago
      Man, I just don't have faith in most people to stay focused on driving while wearing these. Hell, we can't even pay attention now without something beaming images directly in front of retinas. I know this much, I absolutely despise these pricks using their cars as mobile phone booths/chat rooms/offices. Pretty much every time someone swerves into my lane and then back again, or cuts me off without a signal, or slams on their brakes for no reason, or makes a right turn from a left lane, or rides my ass when I'm doing 10 above the speed limit, or slows to a damn crawl for absolutely no reason, or...on and on and on...practically EVERY TIME, these dinks are on the phone, or occupied with their phone in some way. They're usually "hands-free" too, just because their hands aren't occupied with the device doesn't mean their heads aren't.
      Jarda
      • 9 Months Ago
      This is, again, a matter of government taking away your freedom. Sticking their noses into your life. And therefore sheep don't care. They love their government, they don't question their government. They're owned by the gov. Not a single person got injured by someone wearing these while driving. Hence there's not even any evidence the google glasses were the actual cause.
        Lachmund
        • 9 Months Ago
        @Jarda
        The ignorance is strong in this one!
        Dave
        • 9 Months Ago
        @Jarda
        If the government taking away your freedom means you won't hit me head on while you screw around with Google glass I'm all for it.
          creamwobbly
          • 9 Months Ago
          @Dave
          Protections to the special freedoms of one group should not negatively affect the more fundamental freedoms of others.
        ravenosa
        • 9 Months Ago
        @Jarda
        Talking about sheep while baaing right wing talking points is a bit ironic, don't you think?
        CarGuy
        • 9 Months Ago
        @Jarda
        This ranks as one of the dumbest comments I've ever seen on here. And it sort of why there should be a test before allowing people to vote. People like Jarda clearly lack basic understanding of the definition of freedom and also basic reasoning skills. This is like saying "I've driven drunk and texted while driving a bunch of times and nothing bad has happened. Therefore those things shouldn't be illegal." To be clear, Jarda, since this is apparently complicated for you. Driving is NOT a right protected by the Constitiution. It's a privileged that can be revoked and/or limited. You can sit in your house and use your Google Glass all you want with no interference. But don't get on the road where my family is driving and use your distraction device. It amazes me how dumb people are.
      IBx27
      • 9 Months Ago
      Screw you google, back in 2005 you were awesome, but now you're worse than the NSA you work for.
      Evander Smart
      • 9 Months Ago
      Google is the next generation of The Police State. Surveillance is their true mission, and this is Step 1. Anybody who thinks they are just a search engine needs to get their head out of their toilet!
      Jesus!
      • 9 Months Ago
      You know seriously. What will one of these "lobbyists" do when one of their family or friends is hit by a driver playing on this? People stop the madness. Just drive, listen to the radio, and relax people.
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