The Japanese government plans to request Google to alert the residents about when and where it will take a close-up and 360-degree color footage of the street's under its 'Street View service' as to make sure people's privacy is not intruded, officials said.
The Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry yesterday made this decision after an advisory panel asked it to demand from California-based Internet firm 'Mountain View' to inform both municipal governments and residents beforehand of the time and place when it plans to shoot street film.
The service provides close-up views of city streets as caught by Google's Street View cameras installed in vehicles driving along the roads.
In June, the panel determined that the service could be deemed consistent with Japan's personal information protection law, if the firm takes appropriate steps including blurring identifiable images, such as faces.
But in the latest report, the panel said, "It cannot be said that people would accept the service immediately even if problems concerning its legality may have been cleared up."
"Therefore, it is indispensable that Google takes measures to allay ordinary citizens' concerns and anxieties about the service," it added.
Dozens of municipal assemblies have also adopted resolutions asking the government to place curbs on the service, on the grounds it may breach the privacy of residents.