The Right to Be Forgotten: Issuing a Voluntary Recall
Drexel Law Review, vol. 7
25 Pages Posted: 26 Feb 2015 Last revised: 30 Apr 2020
Date Written: February 24, 2015
Recently, in Europe and elsewhere, some form of a “Right to Be Forgotten” in various internet and search engine contexts has been recognized. This Article contends, however, that for various largely practical reasons, no such broad-sweeping right should be adopted in the United States. More narrowly particularized defamation, privacy, confidentiality, and emotional distress claims, along with criminal record expungement statutes, jointly provide a better alternative path, especially when modified to address significant socio-economic class effects. Crucially, the superiority of narrower, particularized, contextual, and pluralistic approaches to the concerns underlying a “Right to Be Forgotten” flows from important systematic biases and asymmetries between persons seeking a de-linking or deletion of personal information on the one hand, and information aggregators such as Google on the other.
Keywords: privacy, information, right to be forgotten, internet, search engines
JEL Classification: K19
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation