The European courts have ruled that Google (and other search engine providers) must delete web links that might upset or embarrass anyone. Private individuals now have the right to request that search engine companies remove out of date or incorrect information that may no longer be relevant.
This means Google will have to remove some search engine results when certain names are searched. The case has been bought to the forefront by Mario Costeja Gonzalez from Spain who complained that when searching his own name in Google the results bought up a link to a 1998 story about unpaid debts which he claims have long been settled.
The information was seen to be detrimental to Mr Gonzalez’s reputation.
So where does this leave the search engine giant – Google is understandably fighting the ruling and says that it only provides the information, what users do with it is up to them.
The questions here at #sharpmonkeys HQ are what is “out of date” information? How much due diligence do you do when engaging with a new customer or supplier? Is the ruling only going to effect private individuals? How about company directors? surely these two things are linked?
What about bad reviews? Will we be looking at a sanitized web with only “feel good” information regarding individuals and companies. We think this will be an interesting one to watch!