Privacy, Freedom of Expression, and the Right to Be Forgotten in Europe
Cambridge Handbook of Consumer Privacy, eds. Jules Polonetsky, Omer Tene, and Evan Selinger (Cambridge University Press, 2017)
33 Pages Posted: 1 Mar 2017 Last revised: 8 Sep 2017
Date Written: September 1, 2017
In this chapter we discuss the relation between privacy and freedom of expression in Europe. In principle, the two rights have equal weight in Europe – which right prevails depends on the circumstances of a case. We use the Google Spain judgment of the Court of Justice of the European Union, sometimes called the ‘right to be forgotten’ judgment, to illustrate the difficulties when balancing the two rights. The court decided in Google Spain that people have, under certain conditions, the right to have search results for their name delisted. We discuss how Google and Data Protection Authorities deal with such delisting requests in practice. Delisting requests illustrate that balancing privacy and freedom of expression interests will always remain difficult.
Keywords: Privacy, Personal Data, Right to Be Forgotten, Sensitive Data, Dutch Law, Special Categories of Data, Criminal Conviction, Freedom of Expression, Freedom of Speech, Search Engine
JEL Classification: K12, K00, D10, D11, D20, D30, D40, D60, D70, L00, L11, L20, L51
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