Google+ Hangouts Update 'Colorful Notification, New Sidebar' - Settles 'Trademarked Keywords' Lawsuit with Rosetta Stone; Loses 'Gangland' Defamation Suit in Australia

Google improves Hangouts, bringing the overall feel in line with other, recent Plus changes. Most importantly, there's more white space, less clutter and clearer notifications."The most important part of a hangout is the people in the room", which aptly describes the redesign's major benefit. Hangouts now consolidates "important items -- like invites, chat, and apps […]

Google improves Hangouts, bringing the overall feel in line with other, recent Plus changes. Most importantly, there's more white space, less clutter and clearer notifications.

"The most important part of a hangout is the people in the room", which aptly describes the redesign's major benefit. Hangouts now consolidates "important items -- like invites, chat, and apps -- into a sidebar that's there when you need it, and tucked away when you don't," explains Amit Fulay, Google product manager, in a G+ post.

Here is what's new in Google+ Hangouts today:

  • "A sidebar you can show or hide. The most important part of a hangout is the people in the room, so we've consolidated important items (like invites, chat, and apps) into a sidebar that's there when you need it, and tucked away when you don't.
  • Clean, colorful notifications. Alerts now appear in red, actions in blue, and announcements in grey, making it easier to read and respond to notifications while you're inside the hangout.
  • Apps that are easier to find and manage. The sidebar contains your frequently-used apps, as well as other ones active in the hangout. And you can also remove apps from the sidebar at any time," informs Google.

Google+ Hangouts update rolls out

In other Google news, Rosetta Stone and Google settled the three-year old lawsuit, and agreed to collaborate in fight against counterfeiting and internet piracy -- "online ads for counterfeit goods and prevent the misuse and abuse of trademarks on the Internet," according to press release.

The companies will also work together to help law enforcement officials around the world go after counterfeiters at the source.

In another case, a jury in the supreme court of the Australian state Victoria, ruled on Tuesday October 30, that Google is liable for damages after a complaint that its search results had linked a local man to gangland crime.

The plaintiff, 62-year-old Milorad Trkulja, was connected to phrases such as "Melbourne crime" in Google search results and showed his photo near images of suspected members of Melbourne's organized crime scene.

Trkulja said the U.S. site had refused to remove the material when asked. He had previously won a related case against Yahoo, which was ordered to pay about $250,000 (USD) in damages.

The jury ruled Google was not liable for its web search results. But it find, Google guilty of defamation, because the later didn't removed the image from search results, after the plaintiff's request. The jury said, Google should have removed those search results when it received Trkulja's complaint.

The judge is expected to rule on damages in the next couple weeks.

Google has not commented on the verdict and might still appeal.