Europe's top court: people have right to be forgotten on Internet

Comments (54)
acts2380 wrote:

We need this law in the USA. Google is a DEMPARTY operative

May 13, 2014 7:59am EDT  --  Report as abuse
timedonkey wrote:

We have gone past privacy and are now in a world where there are no secrets.

May 13, 2014 9:08am EDT  --  Report as abuse
PCTon80 wrote:

I’m no fan of Google, nor am I an expert on Spanish property law. However, the case they cite in the article has no parallel here in the United States. In the US, real property records are public. If you get foreclosed on, it becomes a matter of public record and, thus, you should have no right to remove records of that proceeding in a search engine simply because you’re embarrassed that you lost your home. Neither the facts, nor the public record thereof, change because your ego is bruised.

Links to old social media pages, records that are non-public, etc., should have some process for removal, however we need to make sure that we don’t have a chilling effect on legitimate information availability or unwittingly bias results in matters of public interest (like elections.)

May 13, 2014 9:26am EDT  --  Report as abuse

Banks and all other corporations/governments should reverse their current defaults for all users, i.e., no information is gathered unless you opt-in. Currently, the responsibility is for the consumer to write or check a box to opt-out. Backassword in my opinion, intentional of course. How many people would opt-in for junk snail mail and invasion of privacy issues? Damn lobbyists!

May 13, 2014 9:29am EDT  --  Report as abuse
urdrwho wrote:

Good! Google is a bad actor and very dangerous to privacy, individual freedom from government intrusion, etc.

Ask people in the SF Bay Area about Google and unless you are an overly paid Google employee, the general population doesn’t care for Google.

The day I read about Google getting a Av Fuel deal from the government for their private jet was the day I determined that Google and the Government work hand in glove.

I use Duck Duck and the day I find that they are acting like Google is the day I switch.

May 13, 2014 9:35am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Jim123456789 wrote:

If we “pound” too hard on a free service, the provider may just “close up shop”. Then what will people do for a search engine?

It annoys me too that information from 10 years ago, or longer, is still out there. However, if it was already public information, then the right to privacy is absurd.

If you do not want it on the Internet, do not let it become public in the first place.

May 13, 2014 9:47am EDT  --  Report as abuse
paintcan wrote:

“that an auction notice of his repossessed home on Google’s search results infringed his privacy.”

Had that notice been posted in a normal newspaper he could not have been able to request the item be removed and it would have been available for inspection in a public library for decades, at least.

Did anyone actually see that notice, even online with a Google search?

It’s an odd “right”, that he wouldn’t have had in print media, to spare the man some embarrassment.

May 13, 2014 9:48am EDT  --  Report as abuse
rsanchez11 wrote:

Everything is becoming a right now. If you make everything a right, that word loses its meaning, and more importantly its strength.

May 13, 2014 9:51am EDT  --  Report as abuse
austin262 wrote:


we need to be able to rewrite history and we need to be unable to very the past

slippery slope

May 13, 2014 10:30am EDT  --  Report as abuse
wilsonrev1615 wrote:

…but what if I have a photographic memory?

May 13, 2014 11:41am EDT  --  Report as abuse
busseja wrote:

While I agree that we should be able to control our private information on the internet the law suit was brought to suppress PUBLIC (foreclosures are PUBLIC) information. Right result but it shows the court doesn’t think straight. It is a trend exhibited by the girls on the US Supreme Court tend to rationalize their prejudices when deciding cases regardless of the law they have sworn to uphold.

May 13, 2014 11:41am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Jim123456789 wrote:

The court is asinine. Google only provides the links. Removing the link does not remove the offending web page from the Internet. There are numerous other search engines. Duh!

May 13, 2014 12:28pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Inquirya wrote:

Bravo for Spain! Google is a left wing operative for the gay mafia as well. This was exposed 3 years ago. I don’t use them anymore.

May 13, 2014 12:38pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Inquirya wrote:

Bravo for Spain! Google is a left wing operative for the gay mafia as well. This was exposed 3 years ago. I don’t use them anymore.

May 13, 2014 12:38pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Inquirya wrote:

Bravo for Spain! Google is a left wing operative for the gay mafia as well. This was exposed 3 years ago. I don’t use them anymore.

May 13, 2014 12:38pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Inquirya wrote:

Bravo for Spain! Google is a left wing operative for the gay mafia as well. This was exposed 3 years ago. I don’t use them anymore.

May 13, 2014 12:38pm EDT  --  Report as abuse

Google is nothing more than the strong-arm of the democrat party – they will destroy you if you do not do what they want you to do, no different than any Mafia on the planet.

The EU Court got this one right! America’s courts should be so wise.

May 13, 2014 12:59pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
CK2 wrote:

As with privacy, there is no RIGHT to be “forgotten.” What liberal idiocy.

How about newspaper archives? Television tapes? Can someone demand that the Berlin Tags Blatter delete all references to his divorce?

How about government archives? Can someone demand that his criminal past be cleared from the record?

Sheer foolishness.

May 13, 2014 1:18pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
RexSpurtz wrote:

Public records can be kept the old way: at a public library or a public courthouse. I don’t need a sixteen year old punk looking at my records.

May 13, 2014 2:01pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
mark77 wrote:

Unfortunately the US has nearly zero privacy rights. Corporations and government hide behind laws of freedom of speech to track and maintain up to date data on every single person. The US is becoming a fascist state under its dictator Obama.

May 13, 2014 2:01pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
flrdalynn wrote:

Well at this time it will not fly in the United State. I think the Supreme Court ruled that public records could not be retracted in the case of the Prop 8 proponents whose names and addresses were mapped by a person using Google maps so that protesters could harass them. So I guess here, if you don’t want something public that is by law a public record you can’t retract it. This is important information though because what goes on in Europe doesn’t always stay in Europe. I don’t know if the law should be allowed to publicize records indefinitely as in my mind the innocent often suffer with the guilty and no one should have to have a picture of themselves in stocks forever. What good is justice without mercy? Some people are privileged enough to hide the skeletons in their closet and justice should be balanced. Also maybe those who seek another persons information should have to reveal their identity, protecting their identity is more important as long as they don’t do it for vicious purposes.

May 13, 2014 2:43pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
kissmygrits wrote:

I had a pretty bad drinking problem and was arrested for disorderly conduct and DUI. I do not think it is fair now that I am 4 yrs sober that anyone can see my mugshots from those days and judge me presently based on things I did when I was wasted.

May 13, 2014 3:11pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Redford wrote:

This is excellent. Everyone should have a right to privacy; the choice to opt in or opt out of any on line programme.

May 13, 2014 3:12pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
ertdfg wrote:

“An Internet search engine operator is responsible for the processing that it carries out of personal data which appear on web pages published by third parties,” they said.

This makes NO sense at all.

Lets say you have a facebook page. Google tracks facebook… so your name on your page will be a link.

It would make sense (if you wanted to avoid this) to remove your facebook page, or petition facebook to remove something.

It makes no sense to tell google “look for searches here, but be smart enough to avoid this one page, as I don’t want it for this one search”…. that isn’t how search engines work, or can work.

Asking the person who has the data you don’t want seen removed? Sensible.

Asking a 3rd party to conditionally sometimes not show certain parts of some searches base don your request and to arbitrarily adjust how searches happen in the first place?

It’s like me telling the post office to remove all “junk” mail. They feed it into a machine, no person ever sees the mail to determine what it is, and they may not know if I’d call it “junk”… but I should be allowed to force them to do something impossible?

Nope, I don’t see this as possible, much less “necessary”.

May 13, 2014 3:27pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
JTDeth01 wrote:

Google routinely removes links critical of the Obama administration. They have lots of practice editing google listing to benefit their political allies, no reason they should not have to do so for less powerful people.

May 13, 2014 3:36pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
timedonkey wrote:

Google should ignore these old fools, their time of limiting free speech and knowledge is over.

May 13, 2014 3:39pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
yodipota wrote:

So the European Court of Justice is the final arbiter now ? I thought the US Supreme Court is the final arbiter here in this country.

May 13, 2014 3:53pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
KevinStowell wrote:

@ timedonkey

I know what you did last summer.

May 13, 2014 5:03pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
KevinStowell wrote:

@ timedonkey

I know what you did last summer.

May 13, 2014 5:03pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Right... wrote:

Yet more lies from Google. What they fail to tell the reader is that even if the offending website removes the questionable data, Google still caches the old data for who knows how long… probably forever.

May 13, 2014 6:00pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Robxx wrote:

So no people who screw up their lives get to dictate my search results. Sorry but there are consequences in life. You made your choices now live the consequences.

May 13, 2014 6:58pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Robxx wrote:


Google doesn’t have the ability to remove the data from the “offending” website(unless they own it). All they can do is not return that site link in its search results. The data still remains on the “offending” website, you just can’t search for it. You can still go to the original website.

May 13, 2014 7:04pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
JGage wrote:

So now public and political figures will be able to litigate away damning evidence before elections. Maybe even censor and remove comments from news websites regarding them and their actions!

Sounds like a great idea right?

Or does the average person have enough cash to hire a lawyer to scrub the internet of their presence? This process will never be streamlined or fair the way some might think.

May 13, 2014 8:56pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
MadCharles wrote:

They should be more worried about Obama’s snooping.

May 13, 2014 9:06pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
4juies wrote:

Its a mixed bag. Yeah, I sympathize with the man you might have had economic problems and not want the world to know his house was repossessed. On the other hand I do want to know if a sexual predator is in the neighborhood.

May 13, 2014 10:51pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
crosbyboyd wrote:

Could this be used to expunge links, for instance, to the holocaust? Such information is embarrassing to sons and daughters of Nazis and Nazi sympathizers of that era.

Expunging history is the worst thing we can do. And that is true for people who have had their homes repossessed or been convicted of petty crimes.

May 13, 2014 11:45pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Echo2000 wrote:

How wonderful for all the fraudsters, child molesters, skinheads, war criminals, etc. out there. They just get too much bad press.

May 13, 2014 12:28am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Bakhtin wrote:

Looking at these posts, I wonder if the righties ever make any effort to get informed.

First, this is not a new law. It is a new application of a 1995 law that allows individuals to access and request deletion of personally identifiable information about themselves. The principle is that the individual ‘owns’ all data about them.

Second, nobody is expecting Google to decide what information should be allowed and which should not. It is up to the individual to make and justify a take-down request.

Third, removing the original page is a separate issue. The individual would have to make another take down request. The principle here is that Google cannot claim to have no responsibility for what appears in Google searches and their argument that they are not a data controller doesn’t fly.

Fourth, this applies to private individuals. For politicians etc in the public eye, the principle of public interest applies.

May 13, 2014 12:28am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Silverfawn wrote:

What possible mechanism could be used to enforce such an edict? The internet is not contained by borders on a map. The European Union countries can not even agree amongst themselves on important issues like controlling currency, immigration, etc. much less have the resources to censor public records of hundreds of millions of people. Even if the information was blocked in Europe, the internet would have duplicate data in other areas like Asia, North America, and so on. There is no stuffing the genie back into the bottle despite the EU court’s wishful thinking.

May 13, 2014 12:40am EDT  --  Report as abuse
JohnnyShiloh wrote:

Of course! Who wants to surf the internet with someone looking over your shoulder like in the U.S.?!

May 14, 2014 2:21am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Bakhtin wrote:

Silverfawn… ever head of Google UK, or Google Spain.

May 14, 2014 4:57am EDT  --  Report as abuse

It’s about time someone goes after this issue. Private citizens should be capable of having any private information they choose removed from the Internet. Facebook and the like forcing your profiles, posts and photos to remain in their control and publicly available is simply wrong. I feel sorry for young people who may have made some rather poor choices in their online existence and later wished they could clean it up. They should have that chance.

May 14, 2014 4:58am EDT  --  Report as abuse
JayDickson wrote:

Don’t use google if you don’t like google. When if a person is ranting about how he’s going to harm someone or a person writes racist crap on google. This is good to know about a leader or someone other person.

May 14, 2014 6:31am EDT  --  Report as abuse
jcw2 wrote:

Why would Google, or any other search engine, be responsible for information that’s on the internet particularly if it’s a matter of public record anyway?

May 14, 2014 6:57am EDT  --  Report as abuse
edwardboothe wrote:

Google is more power hungry than Obama.

May 14, 2014 7:39am EDT  --  Report as abuse
rickshelton wrote:

I don’t trust Google. I use exclusively for searches. At least they claim to keep no information about search activities from individuals and the results are just as good.

May 14, 2014 8:27am EDT  --  Report as abuse
flrdalynn wrote:

I think that if your identity and reputation is your property then you should be able to have some say in how other people or businesses use that information. I think even the government should have to have limits on what records they can reveal in cyberspace and for how long. Look what happened to the man who supported Prop 8, he was hounded out of his job because he gave money to the cause to not redefine marriage and keep it one man and one woman. Everyone is afraid of powerful groups that use personal information to harm them. The Supreme Court lives a protected isolated life and they should have to think about how their laws affect others. Now the possibility of dangerous criminals being loosed on society is real because they make a law and don’t think about protecting and serving their fellow citizens. This is bad because now even immigrants who are sometimes unfairly targeted by law enforcement are going to be treated like criminals by the public because they are tainted by the release of people slated to be returned to their home country.

May 14, 2014 8:34am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Ob636i wrote:

100% against this. This isn’t a privacy issue. Can’t wait til pedophiles start asking Google to cover their tracks for them or to delete links to their Sex Offender Registries.

May 14, 2014 10:04am EDT  --  Report as abuse
hunterson wrote:

I am no fan of Google, but the idea that public records should be kept from the public is ridiculous and harmful. And being able to discuss people and events in a public forum like the internet is not an invasion of privacy. An invasion of privacy is when governments around the world listen in, store and track our private communications. This particular attack on Google is a distractoin from that.

May 14, 2014 10:23am EDT  --  Report as abuse

Great, now you’ll have Spanish businesses impersonating their competitors to request that search links to ‘their’ business be removed. How will any search engine operator know who is telling the truth? Tell Spanish judges to take a big flying LEAP!

Besides, foreclosure auctions notices are INTENTIONALLY public! Is the court also going to berate newspapers for printing the notice? Their decision is lunacy.

May 14, 2014 10:35am EDT  --  Report as abuse
kdkdkdk wrote:

Stop using Google. There are plenty of other browsers and some do not collect your data.
Stop using Google software.

May 14, 2014 11:29am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Miner49er wrote:

I agree with Google. It only finds published references about people. They just do it more efficiently than, say a P.I., ski-tracer, or reference-checker.

If people have a :right to be forgotten”, they should proceed against the party whi actually published the offending document or web page.

May 14, 2014 11:45am EDT  --  Report as abuse
PopUp wrote:

How does Europe tell the NSA not to spy on everyone in the world? Goggle is a problem but the bigger problem is the NSA.

May 14, 2014 12:20pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
kenezen wrote:

Let’s have a law in America mandating the right to be deleted from NSA
“To be forgotten” To get our Constitutional right to privacy as guaranteed by the 4th amendment. Lets pass a law like Europe.

May 16, 2014 5:33pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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