A dental clinic in Japan filed a 28 U.S.C. s. 1782 discovery application against Google, to assist the contemplated action in Japan for defamation and unlawful business interference. Allegedly, the petitioner received a number of one-star reviews on its Google Maps, and it wished to ascertain the identities of the Google account holders who left those reviews.
The court granted the application.
Considering the general hostility that US courts have had over assisting defamation proceedings abroad, the court's willingness here to breezily grant the discovery request for the petitioner is somewhat surprising, although a 1782 application does not exactly require a public policy assessment like, say, foreign judgment recognition does.