The European Court of Justice ruling against Google Spain is another step toward the deletion of the History (capital “H”) and collective memory. In the name of “privacy” the Court allowed the possibility to completely remove a lawful information from public scrutiny, as is clearly stated at the end of the ruling:
Article 12(b) and subparagraph (a) of the first paragraph of Article 14 of Directive 95/46 are to be interpreted as meaning that, in order to comply with the rights laid down in those provisions and in so far as the conditions laid down by those provisions are in fact satisfied, the operator of a search engine is obliged to remove from the list of results displayed following a search made on the basis of a person’s name links to web pages, published by third parties and containing information relating to that person, also in a case where that name or information is not erased beforehand or simultaneously from those web pages, and even, as the case may be, when its publication in itself on those pages is lawful. (emphasis added)
Now, with the support of this decision, corrupts politicians, scammers, con artists, bad payers and similar breeds can easily re-gain their anonymity, and historians from the future will not be able to discover and understand how our society was working.
And, to some extent, this wouldn’t be a bad thing…