In the movie “Gigi” there is a song sung by an older couple as they remember the day when they first met, The man sings “We met at nine”, and his wife counters, “We met at eight”, he returns “I was on time”, “No” she replies, “You were late” to which is says, “Ah yes, I remember it well.” It’s a lovely duet and it makes me think about the news that now Google is saying that perhaps we cannot forget what we have remembered. You may recall a court ruling in Europe said that someone could protest old links and stories about themselves and petition to have them removed. Google, said they would oblige people’s wishes to be lost from the internet as we have discussed here before. It seems that now it is not so easy to remove the links that bind us together. While the whole situation is interesting I find myself thinking about stories of people who have a photographic memory and are incapable of forgetting. Imagine the curse of remembering everything exactly as it happened. I recall hearing how someone was listening to a lecture and one of the other attendants sneezed and that sneeze was now an indelible part of the lecture- there was no ability to edit or choose what was remembered or forgotten. Imagine keeping every photograph that you have ever taken, unable to throw out the bad ones or photo bombs. For what will we be held accountable when everything we do is recorded and retrievable? Will there be a hierarchy as to what is more important and what isn’t? And what about the physical space of our cyber memory, will our online past soon be so large that it will take up more space than we can give it? There are more questions but unfortunately I can’t remember them right now…..
A link to an article on the issues around internet forgetting