Thursday, July 10, 2014

Simon Hughes says "right to be forgotten" is unworkable

The Guardian reports Simon Hughes' appearance before the Lords home affairs committee yesterday:
He said: "There is no right given by the judgment for people to have their personal data deleted from the search engine results. There is no unfettered right. There is no right to be forgotten. Not in the law of the UK, not in directives, not in the judgments of the court." 
Hughes said a "mischievous" business of online reputation management had emerged since the judgment, offering to assist people trying to request removal of information online. 
On the practicalities, Hughes commented: "It looks to me as if it may be an unmanageable task. It will be a phenomenal task. It's not technically possible to remove all traces of data loaded on to the internet from other sources. You can't exercise the right to be forgotten. The information system could not be made to do it.
Simon is right, of course, and I am pleased to hear him saying this. It's just a shame that Liberal Democrat MEPs took a different line before the recent elections.

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