The economics of the right to be forgotten

Byung Cheol Kim, Jin Yeub Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Scholars and practitioners debate whether to expand the scope of the right to be forgotten—the right to have certain links removed from search results—to encompass global search results. The debate centers on the assumption that the expansion will increase the incidence of link removal, which reinforces privacy while hampering free speech. We develop a game-theoretic model to show that the expansion of the right to be forgotten can reduce the incidence of link removal. We also show that the expansion does not necessarily enhance the welfare of individuals who request removal and that it can either improve or reduce societal welfare. Our analysis has implications for understanding the impact of the global expansion of the right to be forgotten on privacy and free speech.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)335-360
Number of pages26
JournalJournal of Law and Economics
Volume60
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017 May

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Law

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