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Google tells UK media which of their stories it is hiding from search results

Loek Essers | July 4, 2014
The removal of the search results is a direct result of a May ruling by the Court of Justice of the European Union.

However, while O'Neal is the only person named in the column, it remains findable when you search for his name, said economics editor Robert Peston who wrote the article. "The implication is that oblivion was requested not by anyone who appears in the blog itself [...] but by someone named in the comments written by readers underneath the blog," he said, adding that Google won't tell him who made the request.

Google confirmed reports it had received over 70,000 removal requests so far. On the first day it received 12,000, but the rate has now slowed to around 1,000 per day.

The publishers cannot fight the removals with Google directly. Anyone who disagrees with one of Google's decisions can contact their local Data Protection Authority (DPA), Google states in an online FAQ.

"This is a new and evolving process for us. We'll continue to listen to feedback and will also work with data protection authorities and others as we comply with the ruling," Google said.

The Daily Mail and The Guardian called the deletion of search results censorship.

The Guardian called on publishers to fight back, saying that critical articles that raise serious political, moral or ethical questions should not be allowed to disappear. "To do so is a huge, if indirect, challenge to press freedom," it said.

 

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