The pair are claiming their “right to be forgotten” under EU rules and want Google to delete links to the reports dating back to 2015.
The apparent targets of an information campaign by short-sellers got a boost in their bid to force Google to sever search links to reports criticizing their business models and depicting them living a lavish lifestyle.
The pair are claiming their “right to be forgotten” under EU rules and want Google to delete links to the reports dating back to 2015. Google refused, saying it couldn’t judge whether the content in the disputed articles was wrong, as the complainants said.
The EU Court of Justice ruled on Thursday that search engine operators “must deference information” on the internet when the person making the request “proves that such information is manifestly inaccurate.”
The case is the latest test of the right to be forgotten following a 2014 EU court ruling that forces search engines to remove European links to websites that contain out of date or false information that could unfairly harm a person’s reputation.
The EU judges said that it’s up to the targets of online articles or pictures to prove why the material is wrong, but that they don’t need to go through the courts to prove this.
Google and other search engine providers “cannot be required to play an active role in trying to find facts which are not substantiated by the request for deferencing,” the court said.
The case is: C-460/20, Google (Déréférencement d’un contenu prétendument inexact).