October 21, 2014
Google claims that it has taken additional measures to make search results more resistant to piracy. According to a new white paper, Google has changed its search-engine algorithms so the sites with a large number of takedown notices appear lower in search results rankings. The company has also enhanced autocomplete and related search, preventing the inclusion of terms associated with piracy. New advertising products will also promote copyright-friendliness.
“Piracy often arises when consumer demand goes unmet by legitimate supply,” Google writes in the report. “As services ranging from Netflix to Spotify to iTunes have demonstrated, the best way to combat piracy is with better and more convenient legitimate services. The right combination of price, convenience and inventory will do far more to reduce piracy than enforcement can.”
In 2013, the company reported that it received around 224 million Digital Millennium Copyright Act takedown requests, and Google then removed 222 million. Google also pointed out that its request return time fell under six hours.
“However, the company noted, it doesn’t remove pages from results unless it receives a specific removal request for a given page — and doesn’t block sites categorically from results,” reports Variety.
The company also rejects any requests that are inaccurate or unjustified.
“Everyone shares a responsibility to help curb unlawful conduct online, and we are glad to see Google acknowledging its role in facilitating access to stolen content via search,” explains an MPAA rep. “We look forward to examining the results of Google’s algorithm changes to see if they reduce the appearance in search results of stolen content and the sites that profit from it.”