The Right to Be Forgotten

That’s a new one, but I’m not sure I’d mind it:

European lawmakers have told Google to forget about it. The top European Court has ruled that citizens have a “right to be forgotten”, and that you can ask the Big G to delete search results about you.

In what could turn out to be one of the biggest shake-ups to online privacy legislation, the European Union Court of Justice decided today that people can ask Google and other online entities to edit or erase online search results if those results contain information that might infringe the person in question’s privacy.

I’m not sure I’d mind it, that is, if I could figure out what the heck it means

“Might infringe” on someone’s “privacy” is so full of ambiguities I’m not sure how it would ever hold up in an American court. What’s my privacy? Stuff I’ve searched for that might embarrass me? Or would that be limited to searches which could identify me? Or embarrassing searches which could identify me?

And how does one infringe on another’s privacy digitally? So long as the data remains unexamined on a server, has my privacy been infringed? Or does that data need to be made public somehow?