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The ruling is a blow to privacy campaigners
The Japanese Supreme Court has decided that a man’s attempt to get the “right to be forgotten” rule applied to online stories about him, is to be denied. Whilst not named by the court, it is known that the man in question was fined half a million yen in 2013 for breaking child prostitution laws, and demanded that Google remove online references to his criminal past because he was attempting to rebuild his life “unhindered”. However, the court said that due to the seriousness of the crimes in question, the public had a right to know. The judge in the case is quoted as saying “the deletion can be demanded only when value of privacy protection clearly exceeds freedom of expression of search sites”. Taj Meadows from Google Asia Pacific said that it had been agreed by the court that “any decision to delete information from search results should prioritise the public’s right to information”.
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