California
23 October 2014
Reporter: Tammy Facey

Google updates on anti-piracy initiatives


Google has made changes to the way it handles piracy in its search results, with commonly reported infringing sites being demoted more frequently with an improve signal.

In 2013, the search giant released its first ‘How Google Fights Piracy’ report, in which it promised to provide better transparency to copyright owners and do more to prevent abuse of their rights.

Commentators argued that very little came of that report, but Google has now released its second issue of ‘How Google Fights Piracy’.

In the new report, Google listed its activity over the past year, showing that it has participated in workshops with policymakers and government agencies.

Katherine Oyama, senior copyright counsel at Google, wrote in a blog post that the search engine is using an improved Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) demotion signal to rank sites lower in results based on the number successful DMCA removal notices applied against them.

In 2013, Google claimed to have received more copyright removal notices every day than in all of 2009—more than 4.3 million domains in 30 days alone.

The most recent DMCA takedowns include muzofon.com, which has been reported more than one million times, and rapidgator.net, with 815,000 requests.

Oyama said that Google will be also testing new advertisement formats in search results “to help people find legitimate sources of media”, such as ‘Watch Star Trek Into Darkness‘ followed by a drop-down suggestion pointing to Amazon or Google Play.

The results currently only show in the US, but Google plans to expand internationally.

“Every day our partnership with the entertainment industry deepens. Just this month we launched a collaboration with Paramount Pictures to promote their upcoming film Interstellar with an interactive website.”

“And Content ID (our system for rights holders to easily identify and manage their content on YouTube) recently hit the milestone of enabling more than $1 billion in revenue to the content industry,” said Oyama.

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