Google asks Europeans what they think about the ‘right to be forgotten’
Top Google executives are planning a listening tour of Europe to get feedback from the public and experts about how they should handle the landmark "right to be forgotten" ruling by a top European Union court in May that said the search engine should pull outdated or irrelevant links. The process, set to begin in September, could go on for a year.
Google launched a website soliciting the European public’s feedback on the issue on Friday morning. "We want to strike this balance right," the company said on the page. "This obligation is a new and difficult challenge for us, and we’re seeking advice on the principles Google ought to apply when making decisions on individual cases. That’s why we’re convening a council of experts."
Google’s privacy commission includes Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales, executive chairman Eric Schmidt, and top Google lawyer David Drummond.
The European Union’s top court ruled in May that Google should delete search results that are "inadequate, irrelevant, or no longer relevant" about individuals. Yet that’s already proven easier said than done. Last week, British journalist Robert Peston said he was notified that articles he had written about Stan O’Neal, the former CEO of Merrill Lynch, would be removed from the search engine, raising questions about what Google should consider "relevant."
Several European web-monitoring shops also told The New York Times this week that they’re receiving requests from clients to remove unflattering links from Google.
#TheBearIsLoose: The hashtag White House staffers are using when President Barack Obama goes off his tightly held official schedule and casually meets with members of the public. He was castigated by Republicans for doing so this week as the humanitarian situation on the border with Mexico worsens.
Four things to know Friday morning:
- China’s state media has called the iPhone a threat to national security because it can time-stamp and track the location of users.
- Alibaba, often referred to as the "eBay of China," told investors via email that it is planning to start its IPO process as soon as the end of this month. It could overtake Facebook’s public offering as the biggest tech-sector IPO ever.
- Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella sent a long letter to employees on Thursday about changes he has in mind for the company. The long and short of it: he wants "important steps to visibly change our culture."
- The Federal Trade Commission has filed suit against Amazon, saying the company knowingly allowed children to make purchases in its app store worth millions of dollars.