Google To French Regulators Looking To Expand 'Right To Be Forgotten' Globally: Forget About It

from the forget-you dept

Earlier this summer we wrote about some ridiculous demands coming out of France, asking that Google expand the "right to be forgotten" globally. As you hopefully already know, last year, a European court came out with a troubling ruling that required Google into a sort of "right to be forgotten" situation, where links associated with someone's name that were magically deemed no longer relevant, needed to be "de-linked." Google reluctantly complied, and has since been busy de-linking many individuals from totally factual news stories about them. But, given that this was the law in Europe, it only did so in Europe.

That resulted in the complaint from France -- to which Google has now responded by saying it will not comply with a global right to be forgotten, because the results would be catastrophic for free speech and the open internet:
This is a troubling development that risks serious chilling effects on the web.

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 [French regulator'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.

We believe that no one country should have the authority to to control what content someone in a second country can access. We also believe this order is disproportionate and unnecessary, given that the overwhelming majority of French internet users—currently around 97%—access a European version of Google’s search engine like google.fr, rather than Google.com or any other version of Google.
I can't see into the future, but I'll take a wild guess and suggest that the French regulators aren't going to just back down following this response, no matter how reasonable and rational it is. European regulators continue to seem to think the internet can be twisted, censored and molded in their own interest, and don't seem to understand just how badly that will backfire. It's likely that this simple explanation will fall on deaf ears and there will soon be a big fight over this. Stay tuned.
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Filed Under: censorship, europe, france, free speech, global, right to be forgotten
Companies: google


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  1. identicon
    That One Other Not So Random Guy, 30 Jul 2015 @ 12:02pm

    Re:

    It is no conspiracy. Look at all the leaders that are calling for a "New World Order." Biden, Bush, Putin, etc. Google is your friend... unless you are boB.

    “The ‘affirmative task’ before us is to “create a New World Order.”
    –VP Joe Biden, speech Import Export Bank, April 5, 2013

    “I think that his [Obama’s] task will be to develop an overall strategy for America in this period, when really a New World Order can be created.”
    —Henry Kissinger, CNBC 2008

    “We will succeed in the Gulf. And when we do, the world community will have sent an enduring warning to any dictator or despot, present or future, who contemplates outlaw aggression. The world can therefore seize this opportunity to fufill the long-held promise of a new world order – where brutality will go unrewarded, and aggression will meet collective resistance.”
    –President George HW Bush, State of the Union Address 1991

    “We have before us the opportunity to forge, for ourselves and for future generations, a New World Order. A world where the rule of law, not the law of the jungle, rules all nations. When we are successful–and we will be–we have a real chance at this New World Order. An order in which a credible United Nations can use its peacekeeping forces to fulfill the promise and vision of its founders.”
    —George H.W. Bush, March 21, 1991

    “How I Learned to Love the New World Order”
    –article by Sen. Joseph R. Biden, Jr. Wall Street Journal, April 1992

    “In the next century, nations as we know it will be obsolete; all states will recognize a single, global authority. National sovereignty wasn’t such a great idea after all.”
    —Strobe Talbot, Deputy Secretary of State, TIME, July l992

    “We are moving toward a new world order, the world of communism. We shall never turn off that road.”
    —Mikhail Gorbachev, 1987


    “Each of us has the hope to build a New World Order.”
    –President Richard Nixon, Hangzhou, China, February 1972


    “Undersecretary of State Sumner Welles tonight called for the early creation of an international organization of anti-Axis nations to control the world during the period between the armistice at the end of the present war and the setting up of a new world order on a permanent basis.”
    —Philadelphia Inquirer, June 1942

    “We are on the verge of a global transformation. All we need is the right major crisis and the nations will accept the New World Order.”
    —David Rockefeller

    “One of the least understood strategies of the world revolution now moving rapidly toward its goal is the use of mind control as a major means of obtaining the consent of the people who will be subjects of the New World Order.”
    –K.M. Heaton, National Educator

    There are plenty more examples, but be careful... Timmah may call you a conspiracy theorist and go a 14 paragraph rant about it.

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