The internet is the center of global communication, culture, and education. As of January 2019, Western Europe is second only to North America and Northern Europe in internet penetration (a statistic that measures the availability of internet in a given geographical place), with data reporting that 94 percent of Western Europeans have access to the internet. The same study reported that 50 percent of the global population now has internet access, which is a staggering 49.5 percent increase from the recorded estimate in 1990 of just half a percent. From the development of the first computer, to the role of Facebook in the Arab Spring, and now the mass global social media culture, human beings are moving ever more towards life on the web. For those who use it daily, the internet has become the epitome of global civilization.
The internet has become the new idea marketplace, in which the exchange of ideas, knowledge, values, and cultures freely move from source to source. As such, the internet can be a foundation upon which revolutions and world events emanate out of, such as the Arab Spring of 2010. However, inherent in this ever-evolving worldwide information source is the risk and danger of personal data falling into the hands of criminals, and/or the constant threat of private information remaining on the internet forever. This issue is not relegated to hackers or criminals, as large companies like Google and Facebook have fallen under fire for their misuse and failure to protect an individual’s data. Yet, data breaches and misuse are not the only dangers associated with the internet. Unwanted personal data can remain on the internet when it is no longer desired, creating a “permanent stigmatization” of one’s reputation. This stigmatization can impact employment hopes and create negative impacts in social circles. A combination of these three threats has created the problem of data privacy and the modern remedy of the right to be forgotten.
Recommended CitationHunter Criscione, Forgetting the Right to be Forgotten: The Everlasting Negative Implications of a Right to be Dereferenced on Global Freedom in the Wake of Google v. CNIL, 32 Pace Int'l L. Rev. 315 (2020)
Available at: https://digitalcommons.pace.edu/pilr/vol32/iss2/3