Digital archives exist to preserve data for infinitely long periods of time, so it is interesting that the Spanish Supreme Court recently ruled on what is now known as “the right to be forgotten” when it comes to digital media. This interesting news came to us from El Pais, a daily newspaper in Spain, in their article, “Supreme Court rejects claim to alter digital newspaper archives.”

The Supreme Court judges rejected a petition by two individuals to have El Pais eliminate information from its online archive that they viewed as detrimental to them. The ruling specifically said newspapers were not under the obligation to alter their archives in order to delete all references to the names of these individuals. However, they did have an obligation to ensure that this information cannot be easily accessed through online search engines.

Further they said that such a move would represent “a disproportionate sacrifice of the right to freedom of information,” and “the so-called right to be forgotten cannot entail a retrospective censorship of information that was originally published correctly.”

Melody K. Smith

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