Google’s search engine has become the latest significant antipiracy weapon. Google announced in its company blog that it’s taking on piracy this time by penalizing sites that have been receiving many complaints from copyright owners.
Sites that appear to have many copyright complaints will still be visible in Google search but will be ranked lower. Google has been giving many type of concessions to copyright owners for the past 2 years but not as significant as this.
One of the biggest requests was to block sites accused of piracy from appearing in Google search results. While copyright owners did not get that much, they certainly see a good trend on where this Google policy is going. There are all kinds of sites that index and help direct people to other sites that allow them to share illegal music files and films.
Google’s blog said that the motivation of its new move is to make Google a copyright police but to reduce sources of unauthorized sources of movies, music, and other digital goods. According to the blog, more than 4.3 million URLs were already penalized in the last 30 days alone.
Copyright owners were quick to appreciate Google’s move but Public Knowledge, a public-interest group, said Google’s take on antipiracy is ripe for abuse. The group said that while businesses and digital owners may benefit from the move, penalized sites getting Digital Millennium Copyright Act notices may create a new issue. These accused sites may not know, or have the ability to challenge notices sent to Google. The process may also be used by some to weed out competitors and rivals according to Public Knowledge.