Google has finally won a battle that has been pursuing long in Japan. The ‘right to be forgotten battle,’ It drew parallels with Europe’s ‘right to be forgotten’ battle.
There were long-standing battles against the US company asking for the removal of allegedly defamatory comments in its Google Maps services. There were four cases. Out of which one involving a medical clinic was a high profile one. The Japanese Supreme Court today dismissed all the cases, meaning a big win for the tech giant. Earlier in April 2015, the Chiba District Court had ruled that Google must have to remove the comments. After which Google appealed higher and has now won the ruling in its favor.
The supreme court has dismissed the cases, which seemed troubling as the comments that were being disputed appears to be legitimate. In the case regarding the medical clinic, two observations on Google Maps had portrayed negative customer experiences about the business. The medical clinic has sought to have those comments removed using filing a defamation suit against the tech giant.
There are similarities with ‘right to be forgotten’ ruling that took place in Eupore but the legal cases aren’t the same. In the Europe’s case, the whole case was focused on freedom of individuals. However, in the case in Japan, the suits against Google had come from a small number of plaintiffs, that included both people and business.
“We’re pleased that with these latest rulings, the Supreme Court has unanimously recognized, based on existing privacy and defamation laws, that any decision to delete information from search results should prioritize the public’s right to information,” Google told TechCrunch in a statement.
The tech giant had argued about the removal of comments stating that none of the comments violated the terms and conditions and served a purpose for the public.
“While we provide tools that allow business owners to respond to reviews, and we take down posts that violate our policies, we believe online reviews, positive and negative, are a critical tool for people to give and read direct feedback about businesses,” it said in 2015