Timing the Right to Be Forgotten: A Study into 'Time' as a Factor in Deciding About Retention or Erasure of Data

30 Pages Posted: 15 May 2014  

Paulan Korenhof

Tilburg University - Tilburg Institute for Law, Technology, and Society (TILT)

Jef Ausloos

KU Leuven, Centre for IT & IP Law (CiTiP)

Ivan Szekely

OSA Archivum; Eotvos Karoly Policy Institute

Meg Leta (Ambrose) Jones

Georgetown University - Communication, Culture, and Technology

Giovanni Sartor

European University Institute Law Department

Ronald E. Leenes

Tilburg Institute for Law, Technology, and Society; Tilburg Law School

Date Written: May 13, 2014

Abstract

The so-called "Right to Be Forgotten or Erasure" (RTBF), article 17 of the proposed General Data Protection Regulation, provides individuals with a means to oppose the often persistent digital memory of the Web. Because digital information technologies affect the accessibility of information over time and time plays a fundamental role in biological forgetting, ‘time’ is a factor that should play a pivotal role in the RTBF. This chapter explores the roles that ‘time’ plays and could play in decisions regarding the retention or erasure of data. Two roles are identified: (1) ‘time’ as the marker of a discrete moment where the grounds for retention no longer hold and ‘forgetting’ of the data should follow and (2) ‘time’ as a factor in the balance of interests, as adding or removing weight to the request to ‘forget’ personal information or its opposing interest. The chapter elaborates on these two roles from different perspectives and highlights the importance and underdeveloped understanding of the second role.

Keywords: The Right to Be Forgotten, Data Protection, Privacy, Internet, Time

Suggested Citation

Korenhof, Paulan and Ausloos, Jef and Szekely, Ivan and (Ambrose) Jones, Meg Leta and Sartor, Giovanni and Leenes, Ronald E., Timing the Right to Be Forgotten: A Study into 'Time' as a Factor in Deciding About Retention or Erasure of Data (May 13, 2014). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2436436 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2436436

Paulan Korenhof (Contact Author)

Tilburg University - Tilburg Institute for Law, Technology, and Society (TILT) ( email )

P.O.Box 90153
Prof. Cobbenhagenlaan 221
Tilburg, 5037
Netherlands

Jef Ausloos

KU Leuven, Centre for IT & IP Law (CiTiP) ( email )

Sint-Michielsstraat 6 box 3443
Leuven
Belgium

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.kuleuven.be/citip/

Ivan Szekely

OSA Archivum ( email )

Arany Janos u. 32.
Budapest, H-1051
Hungary
+36 1 327-3250 (Phone)
+36 1 327-3260 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.osaarchivum.org

Eotvos Karoly Policy Institute ( email )

Szentkiralyi u. 11.
Budapest, H-1088
Hungary

Meg Leta Jones

Georgetown University - Communication, Culture, and Technology ( email )

3520 Prospect St NW
Suite 311
Washington, DC 20057
United States

Giovanni Sartor

European University Institute Law Department ( email )

Via Boccaccio 121 (Villa Schifanoia)
I-50122 Firenze
ITALY

Ronald E. Leenes

Tilburg Institute for Law, Technology, and Society

NL-5000 LE Tilburg
Netherlands

Tilburg Law School ( email )

Tilburg, 5000 LE
Netherlands

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