The Right to be Forgotten by Google


On May 29 2014, Google published an online form that allowed people who wanted “to be forgotten”. This form was a request for the removal of a link from Google’s search results. Looking at Google’s Transparency Reports, Google is receiving almost 253,617 requests per year. This request covers almost 920,00 links on Google. Google initially stated that it was “disappointed” with this court decision. They had to put lot of resources to deal with these requests. It usually takes 16 to 56 days to process each request. Based on Google’s official transparency report, 41.3% of the reported URLs were now removed but basing on a website called, Google refused to delete 70% of the reported URLs request.

A year after UK’s top court released the “right to be forgotten” by search engines law, Google still remembers you even if you filed a request to disappear from its search results. Over 60% of the reported cases, the search result you want to be removed will still be on Google. Social media sites such as Facebook are also affected by the ruling. Facebook reported that it has removed 67732 URLs from Google’s search results.

Google hired a huge team of engineers, lawyers and paralegals to evaluate each link reported. Google will likely remove the link if they invade someone’s privacy. Some examples of invasion of privacy are revealing private address or it contains defamation and libel. Invasion of privacy is also the major reason why Bing removed some of its search results. When Google is refusing a request, it gives the applicant a reason why the request was denied. Some reasons of Googles refusal were “it is in the public’s interest” and “you are the origin of this content”.

Here are the top 5 sites impacted by this law: – 41,449 URLS requested to be removed, only 17,557 officially removed 13,108 requested to be removed, only 10,985 officially removed – 14,495 requested to be removed, only 10,809 officially removed – 21,508 requested to be removed, only 8,726 officially removed – 22,809 requested to be removed, only 8,631 officially removed – 30,832 requested to be removed, only 7,511 officially removed

Google assesses each request on a case-by-case basis. In some cases, Google asks the individual who reported for more information. After the request is submitted it will go under manual review. Google assured that there are no categories of requests that are automatically rejected by either human or machine. Once Google has reached a decision, the complainant will receive an email notifying them of Google’s decision. If Google do not remove the URL, they will explain it in the email.

For more information about removing Google search results and online reputation management, visit the Pure Reputation Linkedin page here. Know more about Pure Reputation services by visiting their Crunchbase page here.

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