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In The EU, Lots Of People Are Asking Google To Forget Content That They Authored
Here’s one from the “shaking my head” department: If you assumed that all of the “Right To Be Forgotten” (RTBF) requests that people in the European Union are sending to Google are for unflattering or inaccurate web pages written by third parties, you’d be wrong. It turns out that Google is rejecting a lot of requests from people who’ve asked Google to remove content that the requestor authored him/herself.
The folks at Reputation VIP — the company that launched Forget.me, the first service to help people submit RTBF requests — have detailed the results of more than 15,000 URLs that they’ve asked Google to remove since the service launched about three months ago.
As the infographic below shows, Google has responded to almost half of those replies (7,085), and of the responses, 59 percent (4,176) have been rejected. When Google rejects an RTBF request, the most common reason — in 26 percent of the rejections — is that Google has decided the content is “interesting to potential consumers of your professional services.” That makes sense: a person or company asks Google to remove something on the web they don’t like, but Google says no, this is actually beneficial for your customers/prospects to be able to see.
The second most common reason Google is rejecting RTBF requests is “you are the author of the content.” That accounts for 22 percent of all the rejections. In other words, almost a thousand times, someone has asked Google to remove his/her own authored content from the search results (and been rejected). Another head-scratcher: 13 percent of the rejections were for social network profiles, which you’d think should be easy enough to just delete directly.
We’ll embed the entire infographic below. Also of note is that Google’s processing time for RTBF requests has improved from 44 days in late June to just four days as of early September.