Internet Law

Google not forced to remove search results from index

An attempt by a German professor to force Google to remove search results from its index which are derogatory is likely to fail.

Google not forced to remove search results from index ©-Thomas-Jansa-Fotolia

Google not forced to remove search results from index ©-Thomas-Jansa-Fotolia

Demand to remove search results

A professor from Düsseldorf, Germany, has sought to sue Google in an attempt to force the internet giant to remove search results which are derogatory. His complaint refers to a blog entry in which the professor is referred to as “part of the German federal Stasi network”.

The professor brought the court action against Google, after his efforts to locate the publisher and complain to the website operator failed.

The Regional Court of Mönchengladbach indicated in an advisory opinion that the right to sue Google did not derive from the simple fact that the publisher of the blog or the website operator could not be contacted.

The court noted that a balance must be struck between the professor’s personality rights and Google’s right exercise its core business, namely presenting search results in an unbiased manner.

A final decision is due shortly.

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Christian Solmecke is a partner at the law firm WILDE BEUGER SOLMECKE. He is the author of numerous legal publications in the area of internet and IT law. He is also an associate lecturer for social media law at the Cologne University of Applied Sciences.

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