Google faces a lot of questions on Europe’s new right to be forgotten ruling.
Should it notify a news website that it taking down links to one of its stories in its search results? Can famous people remove links to information about them created before they began to make headlines? Should those who fail to understand Facebook’s privacy settings be able remove information held in their social network profile from Google’s search results?
At London swing of Google's advisory council hearings on #rtbf. Unlike the search engine, lots of questions, few answers
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These were among tricky dilemmas put today to Google’s “advisory council”: a group of independent experts advising the company on how to implement the European Court of Justice’s controversial decision in May. The court gave people the right to ask internet search engines to remove sensitive or embarrassing links to websites for queries that include their name. Deluged with hundreds of thousands of such takedown requests, Google wants the council to help develop policies to deal with the most difficult of cases.
Eric Schmidt. Image by Getty.
In 2008, Michael Grade, then chief executive of ITV, branded Google a “parasite”, along with other internet companies that “live off our content”.
Tonight, Eric Schmidt, Google’s chairman, will take to the TV industry’s most prestigious platform to give the MacTaggart lecture in Edinburgh.
The Edinburgh International TV Festival’s annual keynote speech has been on steady rotation between the BBC, ITV and Channel 4 for most of its 35-year history, with the recent exception of News Corp Europe chief James Murdoch’s 2009 attack on the BBC.
So the symbolism behind the podium space granted to Google, Facebook and Twitter this year should not be underestimated. Read more
Google‘s working practices are famously weird. Its chief executive, Eric Schmidt, argues that chaos is crucial to its corporate culture. Others say it’s just this sort of disorganisation that leads to snafus such as StreetView cars intercepting WiFi data.
But Mr Schmidt has no plans to change things.
“It’s very tempting to try to organise the chaos of Google. You would hope the CEO would be able to do that,” Mr Schmidt told the Guardian’s Activate conference in London on Thursday evening. But the “essence of the company is a little bit of disorganisation”, he said, because that allows it to see “what’s next”.
Mr Schmidt went on to stress the importance of 20 per cent time to Google, even saying that he himself took up the opportunity to spend one day a week on personal projects. Read more
Rupert Murdoch is enough of a newsman to know this: if you start a public row, you might as well cash in on it in your own publications.
Today’s Wall Street Journal gives Eric Schmidt the space to defend himself against some of the accusations that Murdoch and his underlings have been hurling at Google recently. Read more