(Solved Homework): Case 8: Google and the Right to Be Forgotten (Privacy) Conduct a strategic analysis using…

Case 8: Google and the Right to Be Forgotten (Privacy)

Conduct a strategic analysis using the Executive Summary template. Prepare and submit a two page executive summary that discusses what strategic alternatives are available and provide a recommended strategy.

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Synopsis of the Case: The content of the synopsis should present relevant background facts about the case under examination.

Relevant Factual Information about the Problem or Decision the Organization Faced: State the precise problem or decision the organization faced. The section should include information that addressed the business issue under examination. This section should be no longer than a single paragraph.

Explanation of Relevant Concepts, Theories and Applications Derived from Course Materials:  This section should be the bulk of your paper. Analysis of the business problem or decision in light of the course concepts must be presented, as well as the business lesson another organization could learn from this situation. Besides citation to the text, learners must conduct research in the University library related to the top. Citing the textbook only is not enough to demonstrate you understand and can apply the course objectives. Here is where comparative and contrasting positions should be considered and examples and illustrations provided.

Recommendations: Provide logical recommendations to address the business lesson identified above. The recommendations need not to be specific to the organization examined, but should consider how other organizations, if similarly situated, could lessen the impact of the problem or decision identified. Recall, that the organization under examination has already moved pasted this problem so any recommendations made, at this point, are fruitless. The focus of this section should be on what other companies should be aware of to address similar problems or decisions. Citation to the textbook alone is insufficient for analysis in this section. Learners should conduct research in the University’s library to support their positions. Depth of scholarship is not demonstrated by providing personal opinions alone, but by using examples, analogies, comparison and illustrations from the academic literature. Not only does this synthesize the material to assist the reader’s understanding, it is an effective way to present the academic sources and extend the discussion of your ideas. This section should be a paragraph or two.

Alternative Recommendations: This section is not a continuation of the prior. Provide suggestions for how to avoid the problem or decision the examined organization faced. Analysis here should be may be forward- thinking, predictive or, most likely, preventative in nature but tied to the thesis statement. Again, opinion is insufficient to provide the required academic analysis. Sources, other than should be a paragraph, at most. the text, must be provided to sustain the statements made. This section should be a paragraph, at most.

Conclusion: End the assignment with a summary of the important points made in the document. No new information may be presented. Writing a conclusion can be done by rewording the opening or reformulation the topic sentences of each paragraph to make a summary for the reader.

Expert Answer


Hi. I never count pages when I write answers here but I’m sure the content will be enough to cover 2 pages. Here goes my analysis.

Synopsis of the Case: The “Right to be forgotten” is a corollary of a broader spectrum of rights collectively included under the banner of “Right to Privacy”. It has been under the scanner recently for its relevance in the Google Spain case. In the year 2010,Mario Costeja González, a citizen of Spain lodged a complaint with the national Data Protection Agency against a local Spanish newspaper, Google Spain and Google Inc. The complaint stated that an auction notice of the citizen’s repossessed home on Google’s search results infringed his privacy rights because the proceedings concerning him had been fully resolved for a number of years and hence the reference to these was entirely irrelevant. His demands were, (a) the newspaper should either remove or alter the pages in question so that the personal data relating to him no longer appeared and (b) that Google Spain or Google Inc. remove the personal data relating to him, so that it no longer appeared in the search results. His demands are essentially a demand for reinforcing the right to be forgotten by local and international law enforcement agencies.

Relevant Factual Information about the Problem or Decision the Organization Faced:

The case is the first of more than 200 cases in the pipeline against Google in which Spanish citizens want the search engine to delete personal information about them from their search results. EU courts have ruled that, Google has to take responsibility as a “data controller” for the content that it links to and may be required to purge its results even if the material was previously published legally. Data protection lawyers said the ruling meant that Google could no longer be regarded legally as a “neutral intermediary”. Now, as a search engine whose principal source of income / revenue is data, it is extremely difficult to delete and streamline data based on such ruling especially if the said individuals are involved in public life. Also losing its place as a neutral intermediary would cost google dearly.

Explanation of Relevant Concepts: The top European court upheld the “right to be forgotten” in the Costeja case and said Google must delete “inadequate, irrelevant or no longer relevant” data from its results when a member of the public requests it. Costeja González argued that the matter, in which his house had been auctioned to recover his social security debts, had been resolved and should no longer be linked to him whenever his name was searched on Google.He told the Guardian: “Like anyone would be when you tell them they’re right, I’m happy. I was fighting for the elimination of data that adversely affects people’s honour, dignity and exposes their private lives. Everything that undermines human beings, that’s not freedom of expression.” The European court judges ruled that under existing EU data protection laws Google has to erase links to two pages on La Vanguardia’s website from the results that are produced when Costeja González’s name is put into the search engine.

Recommendations: In order to protect its International Business, Google has to conform to the EU court’s ruling. However, to prevent such incidents from disrupting its business in future , following measures should be taken;

a. A basic filtering mechanism should be in place where google prevents people from posting obscene or embassing content online.

b. There should be system of seeking an individiual’s permission specifically before linking his / her content to one or more other websites.

Alternative recommendations: A more aggressive move for google would be to continue appealing to the EU courts claiming no responsibility for how their data is used or circulated.


The case presents a very difficult situation for Google Inc. as a whole. Following Spain, other countries across the globe may start demanding more responsibility on the part of Google as a data controller to streamline and protect their online data. They may also become sceptical of using this search engine leading to a loss of market share. The only way out is for Google to re-design its data policy and ensure that it protects the rights of its users along with its market share.

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