Is it possible to forget a loved one? Who loves you more? Apple? Or, Google? We may like to think Apple and while we don’t know how long Apple will remember us after we’re gone, there is a chance Google will never forget us.
Unless you live in Europe. And you demand the right to be forgotten while on your deathbed. In Europe. Not in the good old U.S. of A. Not yet.
My time with Mac360 started when we went online in mid-2004, more than 14 years ago. That means my face and articles are plastered all over Google and a variety of websites; some of which encourage me to find another profession (I did), a few which said to continue my writing about Apple (thanks, mom! That new iPad is on the way; tell Google).
What If I decided to erase my tracks on the interwebs? Is it possible? In the U.S? Probably not. A politician who told the truth would be easier to find than it would be for me to erase my internet tracks in the U.S.
What about in the EU? Foo Yun Chee:
If you want your past to be forgotten on the internet, it might be best to move to Europe.
We just got back to homeland Missouri from a 10-year stay in Europe. Can I erase me in Europe from the U.S? I ask because I care and because I am rather certain that Google won’t bother to erase me. Unless I pay.
I wonder how much?
Google will not have to apply Europe’s “right to be forgotten” law globally, the continent’s top court ruled on Tuesday in a landmark case that has pitted personal privacy rights against freedom of speech.
Somehow someone wants to extend one country’s laws over another country. They do that in Europe already, so why not try to get European laws adopted in the U.S?
It has also been seen by policymakers and companies around the world as a test of whether the European Union can extend its laws beyond its own territory.
Nude beaches would be a nice touch. Afternoon siestas, too.
See? Some overreach seems reasonable.
The world’s predominant internet search engine has previously warned of the dangers of overreach by Europe. In a blog post two years ago, it said there should be a balance between sensitive personal data and the public interest and no country should be able to impose rules on citizens of another.
But it’s OK for Google to impose itself on people in any country?
What would happen if Apple– somehow, someway, someday– seemed to forget all about you? OK, you fire up your Mac and go to check email and there’s nothing on Mail. No email accounts. No iCloud account. No iCloud for you.
iPhone and iPad? You may own the devices but they have, overnight, forgotten who you are? No Apple ID. No iCloud. No photos on iCloud. No email, no browser history. Wait. Scratch that last one. No browser history could be a good thing.
That accidental situation– Apple inadvertently (or, advertently; if you didn’t pay your iCloud bill or overspent on Apple Card) forgot who you are is different than telling Apple– or, Google– to forget you and anything and everything about you.
Google makes money by knowing something about you but does not share its advertising revenue with mere mortals in search engine results. Honestly, I would feel bad if Apple forgot me, but not bad if Google forgot me and all the other Jack Millers in the U.S.