Google To Depress Rankings Of Sites Hit By Valid Copyright Claims
The noose continues to tighten against those sites branded by the wealthy content industry as aiding and abetting piracy, all in the name of huge alleged (not proven) losses, all the while racking up ever larger profits.
In a Google blog post today by Amit Singhal, SVP, Engineering, the latest move will see Google next week update its search algorithms with a new 'signal', added to the over 200 signals already employed for ranking sites in its Page Rank algorithm, the precise workings of which are kept secret to reduce the chances of it being 'gamed'. This signal will be the number of valid copyright removal notices they receive for any given site. A high number of notices will depress the rankings of sites accused of piracy, causing them to appear much lower in search results, "Sites with high numbers of removal notices may appear lower in our results. This ranking change should help users find legitimate, quality sources of content more easily—whether it's a song previewed on NPR's music website, a TV show on Hulu or new music streamed from Spotify."
Singhal is keen to stress that Google cannot determine if a copyright has been infringed, so will only act on a valid copyright removal notice from the rights owner. Also, they will continue to provide "counter-notice" tools to allow people to appeal a removal notice.
Of course, this downranking by Google has pleased the MPAA, which issued the following statement from Michael O'Leary, Senior Executive Vice President for Global Policy and External Affairs:
"We are optimistic that Google's actions will help steer consumers to the myriad legitimate ways for them to access movies and TV shows online, and away from the rogue cyberlockers, peer-to-peer sites, and other outlaw enterprises that steal the hard work of creators across the globe. We will be watching this development closely – the devil is always in the details – and look forward to Google taking further steps to ensure that its services favor legitimate businesses and creators, not thieves."
Since we re-booted our copyright removals over two years ago, we've been given much more data by copyright owners about infringing content online. In fact, we're now receiving and processing more copyright removal notices every day than we did in all of 2009—more than 4.3 million URLs in the last 30 days alone. We will now be using this data as a signal in our search rankings.
Posted by | Fri, Aug 10, 2012 - 07:54 PM