[NYTimes] Google Is Ordered to Block Images in Privacy Case

A French court ruled Wednesday that Google must remove from its Internet search results all images of a former Formula One car racing chief at an orgy. The ruling in the privacy case could have ramifications for the tech giant’s operations across Europe. [...]

Mr. Mosley argued that French law makes it illegal to take and distribute images of an individual in a private space without that person’s permission. But Google said that [the ruling] would limit freedom of speech, forcing the company to block search results without any person or court overseeing the context in which the images appeared.

Analysts said the ruling against Google could lead to greater restrictions on what was accessible through search results and could prompt more people to demand that the United States technology company remove references to their private activities. [...]

"If you force companies to become gatekeepers over everything that happens on their networks, you are destroying the essence of the Internet and its value for freedom of communication,” said Joe McNamee, director of the Brussels-based privacy campaign group European Digital Rights.