Censorship

French Win Right to Censor Internet All Over the World

French authorities says Google must apply "right to be forgotten" to international search-engine results.

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Mark Fletcher/Flickr

French authorities say Google must apply Europe's nouveau "right to be forgotten" to global Internet-search results, not just results shown in the European Union. This means that should French officials decide online info about someone is "inadequate, irrelevant, no longer relevant, or excessive, and not in the public interest," that article, blog post, message-board comment, or whatever will disappear from search results around the world. 

The new E.U. "right" was established in May 2014, when the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) held that Europeans could ask search engines such as Google and Yahoo to "delist" various results that show up when you search for their name. The offending content will still exist on the Intenet, but it becomes much harder for anyone to find.

Since the establishment of what the court called a "right to delist," Google alone has evaluated and processed more than 310,000 requests to delist links to more than a million individual web pages. Delisting was granted for about 42 percent of the URLs. "Whenever a request meets the criteria set by the Court for removal," Google explained in a blog post, "we delist it from search results for that individual's name from all European versions of Google Search."

But this summer, France's Commission Nationale de l'Informatique et des Libertés (CNIL) sent Google an order to not merely delist links from European Google searches but search results around the world, too. 

"This is a troubling development that risks serious chilling effects on the web," wrote Google.  

While the right to be forgotten may now be the law in Europe, it is not the law globally. Moreover, there are innumerable examples around the world where content that is declared illegal under the laws of one country, would be deemed legal in others: Thailand criminalizes some speech that is critical of its King, Turkey criminalizes some speech that is critical of Ataturk, and Russia outlaws some speech that is deemed to be "gay propaganda."

If the CNIL's proposed approach were to be embraced as the standard for Internet regulation, we would find ourselves in a race to the bottom. In the end, the Internet would only be as free as the world's least free place.

CNIL's president did not find this persuasive, rejecting Google's appeal of the order. In a statement released today, CNIL held that "once delisting is accepted by the search engine, it must be implemented on all extensions," because "if this right was limited to some extensions, it could be easily circumvented: in order to find the delisted result, it would be sufficient to search on another extension" and "this would equate stripping away the efficiency of this right." CNIL pointed out that delisted info "remains directly accessible on the source website or through a search using other terms" than an individual's name and "in addition, this right is not absolute: it has to be reconciled with the public's right to information, in particular when the data subject is a public person, under the double supervision of the CNIL and of the court."

Google "must now comply with the formal notice" or face CNIL's sanctions committee, it concluded. 

"There's no further opportunity to appeal the decision at this stage under French law," notes Quartz. "But if Google refuses to comply, it could later appeal any sanctions levied by CNIL. Fines would likely start at around €300,000 ($336,000) but could increase to between 2-5% of Google's global operating costs. The search engine could then go to the Conseil d'Etat, the supreme court for administrative justice, to appeal the decision and fine." 

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  1. It’s good to know the French government can be just as stupidly and obnoxiously imperial and overreaching as the US government.

    1. The French were being stupidly and obnoxiously imperial long before the United States became a country.

      1. You know who else engaged in stupid, obnoxious imperialism in France?

        1. Napolean?

          1. Scare,

            No, he only imperialized in the rest of Europe, Russia (briefly), the Near East and Egypt. Modern France wants the world. Google should say no, and goodby.

        2. The Saracens?

          1. That’s Moops you idiot

        3. Various Kings of Burgundy?

        4. Some guys named Louie?

        5. Lance Armstrong?

          1. +1 testicle

        6. Clovis the Frank?

        7. The cake?

        8. Charlemagne? Or Charles “the Hammer” Martel?

      2. It’s part of the reason the US was able to secede at all.

      3. The French are far more obnoxiously imperial now than America ever was.

        http://www.businessinsider.com…..ica-2015-1

        1. Yeah – all those current French wars of ‘self-defense’ that end up with 10+ year occupations and all those French military deployed around the world.

          C’mon man – there’s a difference between the French *wanting* to be more obnoxiously imperial than the US and the French just being obnoxious because they *can’t make that happen* (even if we were to pack up and head home and leave the field to them alone),

      4. We learned it from and were helped by them.

      5. “The French were being stupidly and obnoxiously imperial long before the United States became a country.”

        Yes, and they continued to perfect the practice before, during and after the US decided to follow their lead.

    2. With outside pressure, they may retreat from this position.

      1. Only if the US government didn’t get a raging hard-on for the precedent this sets.

        1. +1 People’s Directorate of Historical Accuracy

    3. “I learned it from you, dad!”

  2. In order to prevail it seems that all Google would have to do is park a couple of tanks on the French border.

    Capitulation within seconds, I’d predict.

    1. +1 white cross emblazoned on a white background

    2. park a couple of tanks on the French border.

      France should start building many defensive fortifications around their landlocked border, so that if Google invades their tanks would be easily stopped.

      1. +1 Maginoogle line

      2. I suggest a series of deep tenches. What could go wrong?

    3. Or just suspend offering its services to its French market. It’s not like the French would be able to create a successful competitor to Google, like China did with Baidu.

      1. I know it would cost Google money, but I really wish they would do this.

        Because that is what these authoritarians count on: being able to hold profits hostage. It won’t stop until someone goes Galt.

      2. Am I reading this wrong or doesn’t this apply throughout Europe? That’s a big market to blow off. Not that I wouldn’t love to see it happen.

        1. The “right to be forgotten” applies throughout Europe. The requirement of global enforcement doesn’t.

      3. Baidu is as successful as it is because it has a billion pair of captive eyeballs. I think if Google cut service to France, the only loser would be France. French web users would presumably still be able to log onto the American Google right? And if having French search terms is so important, just rebrand as Google Quebec or something.

        1. Baidu is as successful as it is because it has a billion pair of captive eyeballs.

          Exactly, which is one reason why France wouldn’t be able to replicate its success.

          French web users would presumably still be able to log onto the American Google right?

          I guess the French authorities might block a recalcitrant Google.

          1. If France wants to be China. Let them be China.

        2. Google Canada already supports French.

      4. I don’t see why they need a French presence in the first place.

        Just run close the servers in France, run those services from, say, Ireland, and thumb your nose at the Frenchies when they come bitch about ‘taxes’ and shit.

      5. What about closing their european offices and running it from someplace else? You would think Google Translate could take care of this problem from a bunker close to Vegas.

  3. So can google turn the Internet off to the French?
    Please say yes.

  4. There is a simple solution….

    Do it like DMCA but with a wrinkle.

    1) When google is serving a page to an IP address corresponding to a location in France, the links are supressed, an a note is added to the top and bottom of the search results saying results are ommitted.

    2) People who wish to see those results are provided a link which takes them to a page where they are asked under penalty of perjury to certify that they are not French nationals or residing in France.

    3) If they decline, they get the ommitted result.

    4) If they agree, a cookie gets placed that allows them to see unredacted search results.

    Alternately, when they click the link they are shown the court order explaining what they are not allowed to see.

  5. Those who are better than me should determine what I can and cannot see on the internet, so I like where France is heading.

    1. Well, those who are better than ME should determine what I can and cannot see…in other words – nobody.

      If you assume that someone else IS better than you, well, Neanderthal is extinct. Please help clean the gene pool – do not procreate.

  6. Google could just “delist” France. Block all French IP addresses for a few days not only from Google, but from all Google owned sites like YouTube.

    1. I think that one might get their attention…

      1. So the answer to my question is yes.

    2. I believe that would an “interdiction”.

  7. What a bunch of insensitive surrender monkey clods. Don’t the French know today is World Alzheimer’s Day?!

    1. “Alzheimer”? Sounds German. They’ll probably surrender, just in case.

    2. Alzheimer’s Day during Hispanic History Month? That’s racist!

      1. They just forgot, you ableist!

  8. You and what army, France?

    I know that’s not how this works, but that’s the attitude that comes to mind. Fuck you, French state. I hope Google is able to stand up against this. Refusing to operate in France would probably run afoul of other EU countries, but it’d be pretty satisfying for Google to say, “OK, you don’t want us here, we’ll pull out of France.”

    1. Google has to reject this. Otherwise every tin-pot dictator and banana republic will come up with more and more to delist, the race to the bottom which the judges are too stupid to recognize.

      I would not be surprised if Congress passes a law forbidding Google from delisting things, and what would that damned EU court do then?

      1. And the French would be fine with that, right? Turnabout is fair play, right? Right?

        1. its already turnabout – the US has made it quite clear that US law applies in the EU to anyone who does business with US residents or citizens.

          We arrested a couple of Brits running a gambling site overseas when they transited through the US because they wouldn’t bow to US law on online gambling.

      2. And I think it goes beyond Google–is there any principle that makes Google results special compared to any other kind of data on the Internet? How is Google showing a link to an unflattering story about a person fundamentally different from a blog or newspaper showing the story itself? What legal maxim prevents this from creating a regime where governments can demand anyone, anywhere, to take down anything?

        1. It does seem to be a continuation of the old time practice (injustice) of producing legislation that singles out certain persons. If Google is important enough to get their own special regulations and constraints, then Google is important enough that it would hurt the French if Google left their socialist hellscape of a country.

          1. What’s unclear to me is whether this is about someone in the French government with a particular bug up their ass about Google, or a more sinister boil-the-frog approach to regulating all disfavored content on the Internet. It just seems so absurdly punitive and random.

            1. Absurdly punitive, but not random. Google typifies capitalism and if nothing else, the French government is super jelly that Google isn’t French or under their direct control. Which is something they’d like to change apparently.

    2. I’m not sure Google could frame an embargo (?) favorably since free speech can’t even trump some absurd positive right to be forgotten in France.

      Fortunately, they don’t have a data center in France so the physical assets liable to seizure may not be a significant cost of playing hardball. They do have them in Dublin, Brussels, and a couple Scandinavian countries though so depending on how hard France wants to push this at the EU level would have to be weighed.

      1. The stuff in Scandinavia is safe – they’re not even part of the EEC, let alone the EU.

        The Ireland stuff could possibly moved to NI or somewhere else in the rest of the UK.

    3. I’m woefully ignorant on all things technical about the internet (it’s a series of tubes, right?) but I gotta think this is pretty close to unenforceable, especially if Google takes all of its physical assets and people out of France. I mean, you can get to any site from pretty much anywhere. France would need something like Le Grande Firewall to stop someone from going to Google.com and finding what they were looking for, assuming Google flips the Frenchies the bird and decides to just ignore the application of the ruling outside French jurisdiction. That’s just the practical side; the bigger philosophical question is “how the hell do country A’s laws apply in country B?” (I know, I know, tell that to anyone who got caught by FATCA with a Swiss bank account).

  9. you know, if they didn’t invent the menage a trois, then i’m not sure i could forgive those smelly pansies for pulling this shit.

    1. They didn’t invent it, they just marketed it.

    2. Meh, they probably stole it from the Neanderthals.

      Hey Ug! Mind if I join in?

      Sure thing Grog!

      1. I read it as the Netherlands and thought, “Man, Lee sure does have a low opinion of the Dutch.”

        1. Bunch ‘a dike-fingering Gouda-eaters down there in the Low Countries.

          1. “‘a dyke-fingering Gouda-eater.”

            Guilty.

        2. Did I type Neanderthal? Oops…

      2. I also read it as the Netherlands. I’ll have you know that Dutch girls know how to bang the right way.

        1. I heard dick surfing is actually illegal there. As it should be everywhere.

          1. What’s dick surfing? I’d Google but I’m at work.

            1. It’s where the lady rides the male like he’s a surf board.

              She’s on top, he’s laying flat on bottom.

              Then instead of an in and out motion, like nature intended, she hops on your dick and begins sliding back and forth, wiggling really.

              Basically just smashing and grinding off the tip off your dick against whatever the hell is at the back of her vagine. It’s terrible and proof that we never should have given them the right to vote.

              1. cowgirl+horizontal sliding back and forth= dick pain

  10. Commission Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libert?s

    DOES NOT COMPUTE

  11. So the French believe in open borders too.

    1. All your borders belong to us!

    2. Construire le mur sacr?ment

  12. Are the French surrendering again?

    1. The real question is, will Google become the first organization in history to surrender to the French?

      1. Come, now. Belgians, Moors and even Germans have suutendered to the French. Not in the last century, but we need not bash the brave stock so horribly diminished by the Napoleonic and First World wars.

        1. Perhaps the French have a right to have the last century forgotten?

          1. This is what happens when the conquerors don’t breed their victorious genes back into the local stock.

      2. Hopefully not.

  13. Yes, the internet will suddenly become only as free as the least free place on earth, i.e. North Korea. Stupid goddamn Frogs. An arrogant genius is a real pain in the ass, but an arrogant idiot exponentially worse.

    Obviously Google can’t comply with this. So what courses of action are open to the two sides? Google can simply not allow searches for IPs from France? If they aren’t operating in the country then whatever fines are issued to them from the Frogs aren’t worth the paper they are printed on.

    Right?

    Or would they have to withdraw from Europe altogether?

    1. Oh, and the headline: French Win Right to Censor the Internet All Over the World

      They granted it to themselves, they didn’t win it.

      Fuck the Frogs. Seriously, fuck them. I see why the allies didn’t proactively leap to their defense.

      1. “I see why the allies didn’t proactively leap to their defense.”

        France surrendered not just because they were French: they were chock-o-bloc with Nazi sympathizers.

        I’ve also heard that the French Resistance was a joke.

        1. There was a French Resistance. It was just much smaller than The French would have you believe.

          There’s a joke that every person in France who short-changed a Nazi officer in a cafe, or withheld their cheery ‘hello’ counted themselves as part of the resistance.

          1. I’ve been reading Max Hastings account of the fall of Germany and just read a GI he quoted as saying something along the lines of, “Every German we met declared they had always hated the Nazis and did everything they could to resist them. We learned to take these claims as seriously as claims by Frenchmen that they served in the resistance.”

  14. I don’t understand what’s going on with jurisdiction in this case. The French or EU governments cannot command US companies to do anything. If Google has subsidiaries operating in Europe, then those subsidiaries can be commanded I would assume.

    So, if Google really wanted to say fuck you to the French, would they have to sell/disassociate with their subsidiaries in Europe? And I would imagine if Google owned any hardware or infrastructure over there, they would have to sell it. I’m in software, but I don’t know enough about how the actual structure of the internet backbones, server farms or DNS plays into this.

    I wonder how big of a hit all of that is to Google?

    1. “I don’t understand what’s going on with jurisdiction in this case.”

      Have you ever been around any Frogs who had even a little bit of authority? The least of them are so arrogant they make Obumbles look like a buddhist monk.

      They have jurisdiction over search engine results in Japan and the US because they say they do.

      1. They are similar to Californians that way.

  15. Yeah, France, you can unring that bell. Good luck with that.

  16. How cute. Those idiot froggie leftards believe they’re entitled to rule the world.

  17. Why doesn’t Google grow a pair. Their market cap is probably comparable to the GDP of France. If they cut the French off from gmail, YouTube, etc. for one week, there would be revolt and the court would have to back down.

    Maybe my memory is off, but I seem to remember Google once standing up to stuff like this, and Larry and Sergey seeming like hard nut libertarians.

    Guess those days might be over.

    1. They are going to have to stand up to it. If they don’t then every country in the world will line up with orders limiting their search content and google will die.

    2. Nah, don’t cut the French people off from anything. Just move all Google assets out of the country and continue business as usual. If the French government wants to behave like China and firewall every Google IP for the sake of their citizens, let them try it.

  18. Good thing there isn’t precedent for one country throwing its weight around to influence people and businesses outside its jurisdiction.

    /looks at NSA and IRS

    FUCK GUYS WE TOLD YOU THIS WOULD HAPPEN!!!!!

    1. I can’t wait to hear how this all gets played into the net neutrality arguments.

  19. CNIL held that “once delisting is accepted by the search engine, it must be implemented on all extensions,” because “if this right was limited to some extensions, it could be easily circumvented: in order to find the delisted result, it would be sufficient to search on another extension”

    Am I understanding this to mean that CNIL is ordering Google to delist world-wide, and not just in France or the EU?

    What actual assets does Google have in France/the EU that subjects them to their jurisdiction? Is everything on the internet under French jurisdiction, just because it can be accessed from France?

    1. You are understanding it correctly.

    2. “Is everything on the internet under French jurisdiction, just because it can be accessed from France?”

      Of course not, but that is what the Frogs are asserting.

    3. The idea is that Google will have to shutter its French presence to comply with the law.

      1. I’m sorry, I mean shutter its French presence to avoid complying with the law.

        Let’s see if Google blinks. Because if I were the COB of Google, I’d pull the fucking plug.

    4. The French aren’t stupid on this. They know that just blocking the results in France doesn’t have any teeth. So for the ruling to have teeth, they have to globally censor everything.

      So called Western Liberal Democracy and it’s pan-libertarian moment.

      Fuck this shit.

  20. Our government routinely bullies and threatens foreign businesses and governments that don’t enforce our laws on their soil so I’m not surprised by this at all. France is just taking a lesson out of our playbook.

    1. This is exactly right. We do it to foreign banks just to screw our own citizens out of bit more blood money; I don’t see this as much different.

  21. If google doesn’t comply the French may taunt them.

  22. This highlights the need to decentralize the internet. That shouldn’t be too far off, and Google should probably get to work on decentralizing their own search engine immediately regardless.

    1. This highlights the need to decentralize the internet

      Right after the useful idiots at Slashdot finally got their Net Neutrality?

      No way.

      1. That highlights the need to decentralize the infrastructure too. Lots of work to do.

  23. The frogs have made their ruling, now let them enforce it.

    It’s nice to know that the EU (with the “right to be forgotten”) can do things far dumber than our government can.

    1. That’s the thing: they can enforce it against Google with ruinous fines (pending some limitation on their jurisdiction, that is).

      1. How do they enforce any fines if Google has no assets in France?

        1. My guess is they’d file some sort of writ or grievance with the EU, and outsource it to Brussels. And I’d bet the EU would be all to happy to comply.

  24. What gives this court jurisdiction over Google’s operation in every country on earth?

    Can’t google simply say to the french, “well, we’d like to comply, but we can’t, so instead we’ll just cease offering access to anyone in France/under the purview of CNIL”?

    How can they regulate a business that doesn’t do business with them?

    1. I see about a half-dozen people have speculated exactly the same thing. But no one has actually clarified whether or not “ceasing operations” in france would matter as far as the Court is concerned.

      1. The way the French like to riot when when they don’t get what they want, after a week without youtube/gmail/google/blogger etc, the burned husk of Paris will get the court to just shut the hell up.

        1. You’re assuming they would direct their ire at the French government.

          Somehow I doubt that. Because Google makes money, see? And that means they must be evil.

          1. I don’t think they’d direct their ire at anyone involved, they’d get upset they don’t have something they feel they deserve and riot. That just seems to be the way they react these days. No matter who they are mad at they start fires and riot.

    2. I don’t think they can really cease offering access to people who live in France. If you can get to the internet, you can get to Google.

      If I were Google, I would publicly propose that Google implement a firewall on all locations inside of France, and ask the French to accept that French subjects may be able to find a work-around and access Google, but that Google should not be held responsible for that.

      1. I don’t think they can really cease offering access to people who live in France. If you can get to the internet, you can get to Google.

        Welcome to China. They can make it fuck hard to do.

        1. I like those optics even better. Google should offer the French that Google will do its darnedest to duplicate the Great Internet Wall of China to prohibit French people from getting to Google (call it the “Google Maginot Line”), but I would still ask the French to sign off on any workarounds not being held against Google, and further request that the French bring charges against any French person who actually does manage to workaround the Google Maginot Line.

          1. To be fair, yes, it would require that France duplicate the GFW to block Google’s services. China is a country bursting at the seams with skilled engineers. Concepts like deep packet inspection and the like are problems Chinese officials are actually capable of tackling. This is France we’re talking about. I’m guessing that as a nation, they simply don’t have the expertise to undertake this herculean task.

            Unless of course they outsourced it to China. Imagine the 7 layer burrito of irony there.

            1. Paul, you’re missing my plan.

              I don’t want the French to build the Google Maginot Line. I want Google to do it as its plan to comply with French law. I’m telling you, switch it on for a week, and this is over. No Google? No YouTube? No Android apps? The French would, what’s the word? “Surrender”, that’s it.

              1. No I got that, I was just adding seasoning. I would LOVE to see Google do that, but I think the ‘don’t be evil’ thing is just a quaint memory.

        2. This is where the “right to be forgotten” transitions into a “demand to be forgotten”. If ‘work-arounds’ to find the information you’re looking for are enough for the French to say Google isn’t doing enough to keep people from finding what they are looking for, you obviously are in no danger of being forgotten. If the main Google page doesn’t automatically pop-up that accidental Google Maps pic of me and the goat when you Google ‘Jerryskids’ or ‘goat-fuckers’ then the whole thing can be forgotten. If you deliberately go to a Google work-around to find the results you’re looking for when you Google ‘Jerryskids +goat-fucking’ then it ain’t Google that’s keeping the memory fresh. I may feel I have some right to make Google stop reminding everybody of it when they’re innocently looking for something else entirely, but when that’s exactly what they’re looking for it’s not Google’s place to pretend it has no idea what they’re talking about.

      2. “I don’t think they can really cease offering access to people who live in France”

        i’m not sure as it matters as long as “Technically” they’re removing themselves from French oversight.

        It could be a matter of simply saying, “We’re bouncing all IP addresses which *we recognize* as originating in France*…. well, if they don’t recognize (or mis-recognize) the location? Tough titties, as they say in French.

    3. Can’t google simply say to the french, “well, we’d like to comply, but we can’t, so instead we’ll just cease offering access to anyone in France/under the purview of CNIL”?

      I’m no expert on European law, but from what I know about capricious authoritarianism, I imagine they’ll try to seize any assets Google has in France. If Google moves all such assets out of France, then I’d predict they’ll try to get the EU courts to recognize this “right” continent-wide, and Google would have to risk having no European presence at all unless they comply, unless the popular backlash against the courts is big enough (unlikely).

      Europe apparently wants to be to the world what California is to the rest of the US: creator of a bunch of far-reaching regulations that companies don’t have to follow elsewhere, but will feel obliged to because they can’t afford to lose access to that huge market, and find it too expensive to make a “California-compliant” version of everything they produce.

      1. Google would have to risk having no European presence at all unless they comply, unless the popular backlash against the courts is big enough

        Oh, I think the backlash could be plenty big enough, if Google took all of their assets offline in France.

        If Google is smart, they will realize that if this stands, it is the end of Google, and will fight as dirty as they need to. Ex: while it is under appeal, do a test of the Google Maginot Line and cut off the French from all Google assets for, say, a week. I’m betting that would put an end to this nonsense.

      2. If I’m google, my strategy is thus: disable results all websites under a european TLD (.fr, .de, etc). The resultant economic impact should be sufficient to force capitulation relatively quickly. Google is a big enough name in the internet that a trade war is now possible

      3. As far as the internet goes, a “California-compliant” version won’t work for a couple of reasons:

        (1) As proposed by the French, everyone in the world would have to drive the “compliant” version. It would become the only version, not, as is often the case now, one of several different versions.

        (2) What the French are asking is the equivalent of California demanding that Ford put 55 mph governors on all their cars, and only make cars that get 50 mpg.

        1. (2) What the French are asking is the equivalent of California demanding that Ford put 55 mph governors on all their cars, and only make cars that get 50 mpg.

          This effectively already happens. Many manufacturers make their equipment “california compliant” so as to be able to easily sell in CA and so they don’t have to maintain separate product lines.

          Thankfully, the gun industry hasn’t caught onto this. I dearly love my “not legal in california” stickers on all my cases.

          1. I’m pretty sure the car makers have special versions of their cars that are CA compliant, having mostly to do with how they are tuned and/or a special catalytic converter.

            Regardless, in the global market, all the big auto makers run multiple lines for different regions. I’m pretty sure the Chinese aren’t buying California-compliant Buicks.

            1. Chinese aren’t buying California-compliant Buicks.

              Not even Peyton Manning buys a Buick.

  25. #JeSuisGoogle?

  26. I for one am glad to see the French give a big progressive middle finger to the concept of Sovereignty.

  27. on a different tack, who are these deep thinkers who will determine when the relevance of a particular bit of knowledge has expired? It’s like the worst of the public school textbook committee joining with the revisionists.

    1. France (like the EU) is a highly technocratic society. These grande complications are simply more grist for the state mill. No shortage of people to take that challenge on.

    2. “Relevance” is an almost impossible standard to objectively determine.

      Since it is so hard to determine what may be “relevant”, in US civil court discovery, pretty much everything that remotely has to do with the subject matter in the lawsuit is “relevant” and discoverable (barring of course information protected by certain privileges). Even information that is otherwise protected from disclosure by the the US/state constitutions may be discoverable by the other party.

      Then you have the Wikipedia editor wars over whether a subject has sufficient “relevancy” to warrant an article (which I imagine is similar to the standard Google has to apply). It’s debatable and, in the end, pretty much a subjective judgment call on a lot of cases.

    3. The relevance is determined by how big a stink someone makes about it. I don’t think there’s objective criteria.

  28. So does this mean we need to start recalling books, magazines, newspaper, etc., that mention event to be forgotten?

    1. That’s an excellent point.

      How is this any different than book banning/burning?

      Paint that picture and see how it resonates in Europe. Specifically Germany.

      1. Lynch, we’re trying to make this LESS popular, not more popular. Geez.

        1. Most Germans seem to not like being compared to Nazis.

          1. The French, on the other hand, EMBRACE IT!

      2. I believe that book banning is commonplace on the European continent.

  29. Good thing we have net neutrality, huh?

  30. Um, freedom of the press? Does that not exist in Europe?

    Look, if you want a certain website or blog post to no longer come up in search results, perhaps YOU should consider deleting the thing or asking the website owner to delete it? Rather than running to Google to determine the “relevancy” of it (just ask Wikipedia how subjective a “relevancy” standard is).

    I once had an opinion piece about a touchy subject posted on a couple websites without my consent when I was in college. Guess what? When I nicely asked that they be removed, they were. Shocking, I know.

    1. Um, freedom of the press? Does that not exist in Europe?

      No, it absolutely does not. Neither does freedom of speech. The U.S. probably has the strongest speech protections in the world.

  31. If Google capitulates, what’s a good alt search engine to use in protest? Duck Duck Go maybe?

    1. Well, until the French issue an order against Duck Duck Go, anyway.

      Give it a week, if Google capitulates.

    2. It says it applies to “major search engines” – not just Google.

    3. Duck Duck Foie Gras

  32. Google will capitulate. It’s either that or move all operations out of and make sure their execs never visit the EU.

  33. Hillary has an exploratory committee looking into how the U.S. might pass such a law.

  34. Sounds like a pretty solid plan dude.

    http://www.Full-Anon.tk

  35. CNIL is pronounced “senile”. Seems appropriate when talking about the right to be forgotten.

    Google should just stop complying with the spirit of the rule:

    1. Take the result out.
    2. Put a disclaimer at the top of the page saying “we had to remove results at the request of XYZ person, click here to see the relevant court order”.

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