2015 Volume 58 Issue 4 Pages 271-285
This article aims at clarifying the suggestions and issues arising from a set of discussions on "the right to be forgotten". To consider the theme, the judgment of the Court of Justice of the European Union, the report of the European Union Committee of the House of Lords, the guidelines of the article 29 working party, and the report of the advisory council to Google Inc. are examined. As for Japan, the experts' advisory report to Yahoo Japan Corporation and the company's policy corresponding to the report are also reviewed. The judgment of the CJEU is strongly in favor of the data subject's rights, against the background of conflicting standpoints toward privacy between the US and the EU. That ruling will not have much influence on the future court decisions in Japan. In addition, because revealing a persons' history without consent is a traditional pattern of infringement of privacy, "the right to be forgotten" should be interpreted as an extension of this issue and relevant discussion. On the other hand, we can find several meanings in the judgment of CJEU and the surrounding discussion. For instance, the judgment and the discussion have encouraged search engines to develop their delisting criteria, and have raised the issues whether they should notify their delisting decisions to website masters and the general public which have the freedom of expression and the right to know.