Ever since it’s introduction, the EU’s right to be forgotten has been controversial and misguided to say the least. Under the law, Google and other search providers are forced to delist links to new stories that are no longer considered relevant or in the public interest. As if censoring information in just the EU domains is not enough, it looks like pressure is on Google to expand the delisting. According to Google, European regulators have compelled Google to delist links on all Google search domains, not just the EU ones.
According to Google’s blog post, the new strategy is to delist links when a user exposes geolocation data from an EU location. This means EU users will no longer have the option of using Google.com for instance, to easily bypass the delisting. In order to gain access to an uncensored version of Google, users will have to use a non-EU VPN though that may not be safe if regulators have their way.
From Google’s perspective, this isn’t much different from what they do now as geo-location data is already collected when a user goes to Google. Instead of triggering the delisting based on which Google search domain is used, the delisting is triggered by geo-location data. The one benefit from this is that instead of deleting from all EU Google domains, the deleting only occurs if the searcher geolocation data is from the same country as the requestee of the delisting.