Google has decided to share its info regarding its right to be forgotten removals.
As part of the Google Transparency Report, Facebook and Youtube – along with ProfileEngine.com – are the sites most hit by removals.
Take a look at the report. It shows requests and removals filtered by country. There’s been a removal of about 42 percent of the total requested URLs, and a total of about 497695 URLs have been evaluated thanks to a total of 144954 RTF requests.
It looks like, according to the report, the most removals were requested from Germany, Austria and Australia. The least amount of requests came from Italy and Portugal.
Google is actually being pretty transparent in terms of what it has been asked to remove. You can see this in the report too. Reports of items which were removed or not removed are included, although there isn’t much reported which could implicate whoever it was who asked for the removal.
There has been a removal of a good handful of links to YouTube and Google groups thanks to takedown requests. YouTube is the one with the most removed URLs, with a total of 3300 URLs de-indexed since RTBF was implemented. Again, Google is transparent about this.
The reasons for removal are also available to see. Most of them come under the name of ‘defamation’, but a great deal of them appear to be to do with the way that the internet broadcasts negative elements of a person’s or company’s character.
Some of the most fascinating requests for removals have been things like goverments asking for removals of blog posts which deflame the said government (which tend to be denied), politicians asking for removal of references around drug use (which are also usually denied) and lots of stuff about members of parliment.
Given how transparent Google are being about the requests, I wouldn’t be at all suprised if the kind of wording shown above would allow someone like a journalist from the Daily Mail to do a bit of digging and find out exactly who asked for these removals.
Plus, both Bing and Yahoo have confirmed that similar moves for them are in the works.
What do you think about this? Is removing links and results like trying to delete history?