The Right to Remove mission and principles

What the Right2Remove IS:

1) The Right2Remove advocates for the removal of content from the Internet platforms that is designed to cause reputational harm to consumers in United States.

2) The Right2Remove advocates for the application of consumer reporting laws, especially the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), to data aggregators, search engines, social media, and Internet platforms engaged in misinformation.

3) The Right2Remove advocates for the amendment of CDA 230, so victims of web-based consumer protection violations can hold search engines and platforms responsible for the dissemination of illicit, harmful, and misleading content.

4) The Right2Remove advocates for the establishment of an independent review panel for adjudicating consumer protection violations on the Internet. Neither the FTC nor Google (or any other search engine) are impartial parties, being guided respectively by lobbies and private interest.

5) The Right2Remove advocates for the regulation of the advertising-based monetary model utilized by search engines and social media platforms, which manipulate the significance of online information and its contexts.

6) The Right2Remove advocates for a set of data privacy laws adapting Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation in United States, including clear opt-in and opt-out options for data collection, access to all personal data collected, ability to correct inaccurate information, and to erase outdated or unlawful material, the right to object to processing of data for marketing purposes and restrict processing of personal data, capacity for data portability, and the capability to request data be processed by natural persons instead of computers.

7) The Right2Remove advocates for all data aggregators, search engines, and web platforms’ data handling practices to be audited on a continual and ongoing basis by an independent review panel.

8) The Right2Remove advocates for trade secrets and algorithms aggregating, rating and editing data to be subject to oversight by an independent review panel.

9) The Right2Remove advocates for all criminal justice information on the internet—criminal records, mugshots, and court dockets—to be protected from data aggregators (including non-traditional aggregators such as newspapers), made only available by subscription, and mandates that republication is subject to FCRA and state expungement laws. The Right2Remove advocates for removal of information from all public archives about arrests in which the defendant was determined not-guilty or the case was dismissed.

10) The Right to Remove Internet policy focuses on specific classes of sensitive personal information that can be removed to preserve an individual’s dignity, security, such individual’s dignity and security, such information about victims of abuse, threats, exploitation, slander, stigmatization, identity theft, leaks of personal data. See the full list of specific class of data included in the Right2Remove policy.

What the Right2Remove is NOT:

1) The Right2Remove does not advocate for the removal of any kind of information from individual websites and online archives. In only advocate the removal of misleading and harmful information from online platform aggregating and exposing content out of their context and without possibility of correction.

2) The Right2Remove does not advocate for the elimination of background checks. Background checks that adhere to consumer protection laws, such as the FCRA, should continue protect our communities, workplaces, and schools.

3) The Right2Remove does not advocate for the censorship of non-public figures in the public commons. Citizens engaged in civil or uncivil dialogue on the Internet should not be censored so long as their speech doesn’t infringe upon consumer protection laws or overstep into traditional speech torts, such as slander, harassment, hate speech, or discrimination.

4) The Right2Remove does not advocate for the censorship of newspapers or broadcast news media. However, we believe aggregated collections of data on consumers, such as search engines, should not be exposed on the Internet if it produces discrimination, harassment, and stigmatization.

5) The Right2Remove does not advocate for the removal of sensitive information about public figures, government entities, private corporations, or anything in the public interest.

6) Although we support their reform initiatives, the Right2Remove does not advocate for the injudicious removal of sensitive information about sex offenders from the Internet. We recognize reform as the only means by which reincorporation into the community can possibly occur. We recognize sex crimes occur on a spectrum. We believe these two premises should drive reconsideration of questions such as who belongs on sex offenders registries and for how long.

The Right to Remove Organization

The Right to Remove is run by activists for Internet privacy and civil rights.

Director: Scott Philotoff

Founder: Paolo Cirio

Advisory: Sarah Esther Lageson

Endorsements for the Right to Remove Privacy Policy

The Right to Remove is supported by Internet rights activists and organizations, lawyers and law firms specialized in privacy, consumers’ rights organizations and legislators.

From The Guardian
"The activist Paolo Cirio, who launched a campaign group called Right2Remove, wants Google to either de-index the mugshot websites or massively down-rank them in search results – offering Americans a similar right to those in Europe, where there is a regulation granting the Right to be Forgotten”. – The Guardian article, June 12, 2018.
From Dan Shefet, President of AAID
"As form of Right to be Forgotten, the Right to Remove is a Human Right. It is the necessary corollary to free speech. It is the application of the right to rehabilitation and reintegration deeply entrenched in laws and ethics worldwide in recognition of the “Human Condition”. If we cannot allow ourselves to make “mistakes” (a highly subjective test) our personal development, expression of controversial views, artistic creativity and “the right to be different” will cease to exist. I wonder what our civilization would have been like had the extent of unforgiving reputational harm we face today been around at the dawn of mankind." – Dan Shefet, Lawyer at the Paris Court of Appeal (France). In 2014 he founded the Association for Accountability and Internet Democracy (AAID)
From Justin Meehan, Attorney at Law
"The Right2Remove’s mission is to apply consumer reporting laws that allow for the removal of harmful, embarrassing and exploitative content to the internet, and it is beyond a noble cause—it is a timely, invaluable one. Mugshot operators are bottom feeders in a cesspool; they hide in the mud pits they belong in. They kidnap people’s reputations and besmirch them for the rest of their lives. The Right2Remove network provided us with the resources necessary to take down one such operator who was destroying lives in St. Louis. Although a lot has been said about the right-to-be-forgotten conflicting with the First Amendment, there hasn’t been much discussion about search engines, like Google, aggregating and disseminating sensitive information about people on the internet. The time has come for us to provide a check on the powers of these tech monopolies. We must let them know that “We the People” will not accept the premise that extortionists, defamers and data aggregators deserve the same free-speech protections allotted to the lawful members of our citizenry. The Right2Remove isn’t just another criminal justice or privacy group; they are visionaries and ploughmen sowing a more humane and just mentality for our brave new world." – J. Justin Meehan, Attorney at Law

Contacts, Support, and Press for the Right to Remove

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