At first glance, perhaps this seems reasonable. If Google has decided that a lawsuit against a company supposedly controlled by Goolnik is no longer relevant for those searching on Goolnik’s name, then it’s potentially reasonable to delink those results (though I have trouble seeing how thefactual information that the lawsuit happened and that Goolnik was associated with it is no longer relevant. It seems abundantly relevant.)
However, the second order censorship here is much more troubling. Because the story is no longer about some long ago event which Goolnik might now wish to have hidden away in the depths. It’s about his actions less than a year ago of likely filing for a right to be forgotten request. It’s thatnews that both the NYT and Techdirt were reporting on. And that’s not some “irrelevant” tidbit from history. That’s recent, factual reporting.
So I’m at a loss as to how this latest bit of censorship could possibly be legit. And it raises some of the many concerns about the whole “right to be forgotten” concept. Is it really just limited to the supposedly out of date and “irrelevant” information? Or is it now supposed to extend to any reporting on the new and very relevant information about using the whole right to be forgotten process.
There is no official appeals process, other than that we can share “additional information regarding this content” that we feel “Google should be aware of” which may make the company reconsider — though it also says “we can’t guarantee responses.” So it’s just a blind “hey, that’s crazy” and hoping common sense prevails. Or, you know, we’ll keep writing about this story,because it’s newsworthy no matter what the EU Court of Justice thinks or whatever whoever sent the request things, whether it’s Thomas Goolnik or someone else.