Gigaom

Europe’s highest court this week ruled that a Spanish man can force Google(s goog) to remove a search result that contained financial information he thought was embarrassing. The surprise ruling, which has alarmed free speech advocates, has big implications for tech companies like Google and Facebook, and could fundamentally change how people use the internet in Europe.

Here’s an explanation of what the ruling actually does, what the press is saying and where to learn more.

Who is this Spanish man and what can he remove from Google?

Mario Costeja is a 59-year-old lawyer who sought to remove a Google link to a 1998 news article about an auction, which mentioned that Costeja had to sell his house to pay outstanding debts. The European Court of Justice’s decision means that the news article will remain online but that it will no longer turn up in some Google searches.

Where does the ruling apply and when will it…

View original post 872 more words

Advertisements