After Google's loss to the European Union earlier in the year, they were forced to implement an ability for EU citizens to have search results removed from the index. That system was released to the public in June and has seen an incredible number of requests. In fact, the request count has been high enough that the EU is now considering requiring that this index removal be expanded to the rest of the world.
This week, Google, as well as other search providers, were dealt a new blow, as the drafted search breakup resolution was passed through the European Parliament. While the resolution is far from binding or legal, it does indicate the direction of the EU. Clearly they are concerned about the influence search providers have on the general population.
In a likely related move, Microsoft and Yahoo have both implemented the same Right to be Forgotten index scrubbing that Google was forced to implement in June. Neither company has gone into detail about their plans, but both released statements about their intents.
We will carefully evaluate each request with the goal of balancing the individual's right to privacy with considerations of the public's right to information.
While we're still refining that process, our goal is to strike a satisfactory balance between individual privacy interests and the public's interest in free expression.
Microsoft has received 699 requests, and has rejected 79. 77 of those rejections were requests for Microsoft to remove content from a social network, which it clearly cannot do. Those individuals were directed to contact said network. Google and Yahoo has not been as open about their rejection numbers, or the reasons for said rejections.