Google: Nearly 6 Million Requests to Remove Search Results This Month


Google received almost 6 million URL search removal requests in the last month as copyright holders continue their fight against sites offering copyrighted content for download.

Google revealed the extent of the search removal requests in the latest update to its Transparency Report Page. By the numbers, in the past month:

  • 5,678,030: URLs requested to be removed
  • 31,628: Specified domains
  • 1,845: Copyright Owners
  • 1,376: Reporting organizations

Requests submitted to the search giant peaked at 1.49 million the week of August 13, compared to 156,708 in the same time period in 2011. The second highest week this year was August 20, which saw the company receive 1.42 million requests to remove results, up from 91,985 during the same weekly period last year.

Notable requests received by Google include those from the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) with 841,177; Microsoft, which submitted 681,227 requests, and NBCUniversal’s 254,527 requests.

The data doesn’t include information on how many of the requests Google complied with, though. Google complied with 97 percent of takedowns requests between July and December 2011.

The requests are made to Google under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DCMA), which removes liability from the firm if it provides inadvertent access to sites offering illegal material, if they comply with requests to remove content flagged by rights’ holders.

Earlier this month, Google announced that sites with more DMCA takedown requests would begin ranking lower in search results. It’s unclear whether that announcement coincided with the record week of search removal requests. Copyright removal notices then declined the week following the announcement.

Google’s Transparency Report only includes requests sent via Google’s web form and doesn’t include copyright removal requests for other products, such as YouTube or Blogger.

This article was originally published on V3.

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