IP news


Good morning everyone, we hope that you had a great week. Just to let you know the schedule for the next couple of weeks, you can expect our monthly blogpost on Thursday, and then next week (Christmas week) and the week after (New Year week) there will be no news blogpost as the writers will be taking a break. The helpline will be available as usual during these days.

The right to be forgotten

The Spanish Supreme Court has recognised the right to request from a Search Engine the elimination from said search engine of any content that can be located through a person’s family names, not only from the full name. Hence, anyone can request from the search engine the removal of any truthful result that can be located either through a person’s full name or through either of its family names (in Spain, a person has two family names). This can be achieved as long as said information jeopardises the right to honour, privacy and personal image, or when the information is not publicly relevant and can be considered obsolete.

The case arose after Microsoft refused a request to remove links from the internet linked to an individual’s family names, alleging that family names cannot be considered as a unique identifier. The Spanish Data Protection Agency agreed with Microsoft's decision in this case.

The case went all the way up to the Supreme Court which, for the sake of coherence, considered that if the right to be forgotten is recognised in relation to a person’s full name, it does not make sense to deny it in relation to family names only.

And, as mentioned, December seems to be scarce in IP news for the EU. We hope you will enjoy Thursday’s article on Collective Management Organisations!

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