Catholic University Journal of Law and Technology

Catholic University Journal of Law and Technology


Zeyu ZhaoFollow


The right to be forgotten has been evolving for decades along with the progress of different statutes and cases and, finally, independently enacted by the General Data Protection Regulation, making it widely applied across Europe. However, the related provisions in the regulation fail to enable machine learning systems to realistically forget the personal information which is stored and processed therein.

This failure is not only because existing European rules do not stipulate standard codes of conduct and corresponding responsibilities for the parties involved, but they also cannot accommodate themselves to the new environment of machine learning, where specific information can hardly be removed from the entire cyberspace. There is also evidence in the technical, legal, and social spheres to elaborate on the mismatch between the rules of the right to be forgotten and the novel machinery background based on the above reasons.

To mitigate these issues, this article will draw lessons from the cyberspace regulation theories and expound on their insights into realizing the right and the strategies they offered to reframe a new legal scheme of the right. This innovative framework entails a combination of technological, legal, and possibly social measures taken by online intermediaries which make critical decisions on the personal data given the so-called stewardship responsibilities. Therefore, the application of the right to be forgotten in the machinery landscape will plausibly be more effective.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.