The controversial "right to be forgotten" European court ruling has Google removing embarrassing (and worse) search results from search-results served in the EU.
However, all these same results are available to searchers with the nous to search "google.com" instead of, say, "google.fr." What's more, the original sites where the offending items appear remain intact -- if you are indicted for a crime and it shows up on the front page of your local paper, it'll stay in the paper's archive, but Google won't show that result to European searchers.
It's a mess of a non-solution to a sometimes real problem. And to highlight how ineffectual this whole business is at helping Europeans manage their reputations, the Hidden From Google site indexes pages that won't show up in a Google search under this decision, as reported by searchers. Included in the current batch are stories about Scientology, public indecency, and banker malfeasance. It was created by a programmer in New Jersey called Afaq Tariq.
At this point, the "right to be forgotten" is going to have to include the suppression of search-results and search-results about the suppression of search-results, and so on.
Hidden from Google
(Image: Streisand Estate, Wikimedia Commons)
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