On Mon, Jun 2, 2014 at 4:48 PM, Chris Keating
<chriskeatingw...@gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>> > I don't believe Wikipedia could be a data controller as it has no legal
>> > personality, and legal personality is quite difficult to acquire when
>> > you
>> > set out to avoid acquiring it.
>>
>> On this point I must disagree.

WMF is a legal entity. The editors are legal entities. The affiliated
groups are legal entities. And there is nothing in the EU directive
that requires what you are calling "a legal personality."

> I think also though that if editors are potentially liable, then so are
> legal persons that engage in similar activity. Say for instance a European
> Wikimedia chapter engaged with a national archive to update Wikidata with a
> few million records, including some on living people. Arguably both of them
> could be acting as data controllers on those records for the rest of the
> duration of Wikidata. Hmmmmm.....

Now you are beginning to glimpse the scope of the ECJ opinion.

>> Google has a clear purpose too, and it was no defense. Plus, there is
>> a public-interest argument in favor of eschewing the erasure of true,
>> accurate public data that happens to be old.
>
>
> This is all the case, but the decision makes it clear that this is a
> question in striking a balance between the interests of the data subject
> (the "right to be forgotten", i.e. the ability to enjoy a private life), and
> the interests of others. This derives from Article 7(f) of the original
> directive.

Not exactly. The case "makes it clear" that it is *asserting* that it
is striking a balance, but when you read the specific language as a
lawyer, it's clear that, regardless of what the ECJ says, there is no
limiting principle regarding the scope of application.

> It also makes it clear that this balance may be struck in different places
> in different situations; for instance at Paragraph 81, talking about the
> balance of public interest in people who have taken a role in public life[1]
> who are arguably the sort we cover in our articles.

There's that "makes it clear" language again. Do you really suppose
Wikipedia information about individuals is limited to those who have
(presumably voluntarily) "taken a role in public life"?

When did this person --
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dannielynn_Birkhead_paternity_case --
volunteer to take a role in public life?

> I'd agree that there is no clarity about what would happen if someone
> pursued this course of action with Wikipedia, but there are many differences
> between our case and Google's...

Not really, if you read the precise language of the decision.
Certainly, every other lawyer I've asked about this agrees with me
that Wikipedia fits the definition of "controller" under the directive
and the ECJ decision.


--Mike

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