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Google Loses Appeal, Forced to Expand Right to Be Forgotten Worldwide

Google Loses Appeal, Forced to Expand Right to Be Forgotten Worldwide

Following the rejection of an appeal to French data regulators, Google will be forced to expand the European “right to be forgotten” ruling worldwide.

Since 2014, Google has been complying with the right to be forgotten (RTBF) ruling implemented by European Union’s (EU) Court of Justice. The ruling allows people to request the removal of web pages that reference information which may be damaging to one’s character.

Successful removal requests are effective only within European search results. Now being asked to expand the ruling to all of its websites, including, is causing the search giant to push back against European regulators.

If Google does not comply with the ruling from France CNIL then it faces possible fines and the possibility of having the case sent to a higher level of European court.

Google has publicly taken issue with CNIL’s ruling in the month’s leading up to today’s appeal rejection. The search giant is weary about giving any government the ability to censor information on the internet at a worldwide scale.

When it comes to complying with government requests, Google believes the implications of the request should only affect the individual country. Google continues to be at odds with the idea of letting one country’s data protection authority determine what people in other countries can access via Google search.

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France’s CNIL argues that not applying the RTBF ruling worldwide leaves delisted information easily accessible through switching to another country’s version of Google.

In addition, the CNIL adds that it doesn’t intend to allow RTBF requests to come from people residing outside of Europe. To clarify, request will still only come from within Europe, but the delistings will be effective worldwide.

Editorial Credit: Shutterstock


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Matt Southern

Lead News Writer at Search Engine Journal

Matt Southern has been the lead news writer at Search Engine Journal since 2013. With a degree in communications, Matt ... [Read full bio]

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