7/16/2012

The digital right to be forgotten in 2.0 world

I've recently published an article on digital right to be forgotten, trying to establish the terms of debate on this controversial issue. To be precise, the article has been published in one of the most important journals in the field of information and documentation. It's BiD: textos universitaris de biblioteconomia i documentació, which is published by the Faculty of Library Sciences and Documentation of the University of Barcelona. 

I place here the abstract of the paper in english and two links to the full Catalan and Spanish version of the paper. I hope you enjoy it!

Abstract

Objectives. To establish the terms of debate on the controversial issue of the right to digital oblivion. To study the website features that permit the permanent availability of information on the network of networks and the impact of this. To analyze how various national and European authorities are advocating the formal and informal recognition of the right to be forgotten online.
Methodology. Analysis of European Directive 96/46/EC and Organic Law 15/1999 of 13 December on the protection of personal data. Study of the legal doctrine concerning the application of the principles of personal data protection; ARCO rights (access, rectification, cancellation and opposition), the rights of the personality; and, freedom of information. Examination of foreign laws and jurisprudence related to the right to digital oblivion, focusing on the European legislative initiative and the resolutions of the Garante per la protezioni dei dati personali and of the Commission nationale de l'informatique et les libertés.
Results. Until recent times, when someone made a mistake, they could rectify it, change it and correct the errors of the past. The limited nature of the human memory essentially contributed to this. However, the gradual universalization of the internet, which combines a huge storage capacity with search engines that allow us to locate information with extreme ease, might spell the end of oblivion. The permanent availability of information 2.0 represents new challenges for the law. This paper looks at these and analyses how the European data protection authorities have informally acknowledged the existence of the right to be forgotten online, a right that will also soon be clarified and formally regulated by the European legislator. The author establishes the terms of the debate and proposes a broad definition of the new law, albeit of limited extension considering that we are dealing with a relative right, that is, one that cannot be deemed absolute, and which can be circumvented in case of conflict with other legitimate purposes, be they informational, cultural or historic.