I’ve never understood how a single country (like Australia) or a consortium (like the EU) can pass a local law that requires global implementation.
Europe’s “right to be forgotten” law has consistently proven challenging since it was passed in 2014. For starters, requests may only be granted if information is considered “inadequate” or “irrelevant”, but there’s no clear ruleset for those terms, meaning it’s essentially up to Google to decide what’s eligible (and it’s picky — of 2.4 million requests submitted across four years, the search giant complied with only 43.3 percent). And as the law exists only in Europe, there’s confusion over the applicability of the legislation to search results from other regions. If someone from the UK wants a result scrubbed, does Google have to remove it from its US domain too? Well according to a new non-binding ruling from one of Europe’s senior chief advisors, the answer is no.
Advocate General Maciej Szpunar — advisor to judges at Europe’s highest court — issued an opinion today that search requests made outside of the EU should not be affected by the de-referencing of search results.