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Record Labels Blame Google For Piracy, Hint At Censorship

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  • Record Labels Blame Google For Piracy, Hint At Censorship

    The British Phonographic Industry (BPI), the UK’s main recording industry trade body, came out with guns blazing against Google today. BPI says that search engines like Google are as popular as P2P applications as a source for illegal downloads. The music industry is pressing Google and others to censor their search results in favor of ‘legal’ music services.


    Anyone who searches for music, TV-shows or movies on the Internet will notice that BitTorrent sites and other file-sharing services are usually listed among the top results.

    As we have argued before, Google is probably the number one reason why millions of people are using BitTorrent sites today. This trend hasn’t gone unnoticed to the music industry either, and today The British Phonographic Industry (BPI) went as far as blaming Google and other search engines for being a main source for online piracy.

    “Search engines are as popular as P2P applications as a source of illegal downloads,” BPI stated in a report today. “It’s not hard to see why. Key in the name of any popular artist, add search terms like ‘mp3′ or ‘download’ – both neutral terms – and typically the large majority of results that appear are blatant links to illegal downloads.”

    As an example of this alleged facilitating behavior by Google, the BPI performed a few test searches. They found that the majority of the top Google search results for popular singles pointed to ‘illicit’ sources.

    “In a single week in November, BPI test searches were made on Google for the UK’s top 20 singles or albums, followed by ‘mp3′. On average 17 of the first 20 Google results for singles and 14 of 20 search results for albums were links to known illegal sites.”

    The search results are just one part of the search engine problem though. In addition, the BPI points out that services such as auto suggest and Google’s instant service may drive people towards ‘rogue’ or ‘illegal’ sites.

    “The predictive search tools offered by some search engines go further by actively directing users towards free illegal downloads by auto-completing artist searches with additional phrases like ‘torrent’, or providing specific references to unlicensed sources like Mediafire or mp3raid.”

    CENSORED SOON

    Although the BPI is right in their analysis, they also know that the search results are merely the result of a set of algorithms. Piracy related searches float to the top and are suggested because that’s what people tend to search for. Google has no active role in it.

    This is what the BPI hopes to change. They suggest that search engines should actively censor their search results, and move links to ‘authorized’ music stores higher up. According to the music industry this would be a very effective tool to decrease piracy.

    “The music industry continues to press search engines to help consumers stay on the right side of the law and has suggested concrete solutions such as prioritising music search results in favour of legal online services such as those highlighted by the Music Matters campaign,” the BPI writes.

    In part, these lobbying efforts have already been successful. Two weeks ago Google announced several upcoming changes that would benefit copyright holders. Among other things the search mogul said that it would censor ‘piracy’ related words for appearing as auto-complete suggestions.

    For Google this is a slippery slope to be on, and the next step could very well be the sort of commercial censorship the music industry is suggesting. And if the music industry is successful, other industries will soon follow. The question is, however, if that will solve the piracy issues or just hide them.

    Source: Record Labels Blame Google For Piracy, Hint At Censorship | TorrentFreak

  • #2
    Oh cmon, google only projects answers, they don´t give fisically the torrent lol. This kind os actions really suck.
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    • #3
      lumo

      Hope this result will send some real message to those persons who trying to stop p2p/..

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      • #4
        I hope google takes the same stance on censorship in the U.S. as they did in China.
        It would be interesting to see google shut down their servers after being forced to censor them..
        And for a day and see what happened to U.S.
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        • #5
          Wonder how far this thing is gonna go, I do agree with their statistics but seriously will you blame 'Google' for that? results showed are base on popularity .. give them a break, I know they are willing to do anything at this point to stop piracy but what they are asking right now Isn't an anti-piracy measure It's called Censorship..

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          • #6
            Originally posted by freu0047 View Post
            It would be interesting to see google shut down their servers after being forced to censor them..
            And for a day and see what happened to U.S.
            Armageddon? Lol

            But seriously omg how dumb can these people get? Are they just getting desperate or do they really think censoring a Search engine is going to magically prevent p2p sharing? News like this is kind of disheartening
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            • #7
              Originally posted by Ela View Post
              Armageddon?
              Thats the truth. Without google services...
              Think of all the stuff their own.

              Search
              Calender
              Gmail
              Youtube
              Android

              Half of the technology in this world probably wouldnt exist without google.
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              • #8
                Google would lose a lot of users if this happen. Google might not be able to compete if they start to censor results.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by JayBlaze View Post
                  Google would lose a lot of users if this happen. Google might not be able to compete if they start to censor results.
                  I would think even higher of google if they stuck to their principals.
                  It seems like most of the companies out there do anything to make a buck, including turning their back on their founding principals.

                  And of coarse labels target google...
                  What about Bing and Yahoo?
                  You don't see them getting targeted.
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                  • #10
                    everyone wants their piece of the pie, even music record companies... can you blame them?

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                    • #11
                      google won't censor results. it would hurt them too much. right??

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                      • #12
                        Google has censored results before but that was in China. I'm sure if they had a court order telling them to they would fight it as much as possible but if the government will uphold that law they will have no choice. And how would it hurt them? If they censored results I would still use them for everything I use them for.. which includes but not limited to...

                        Gmail, Google Voice, Google Search, Google Shopping, Google DNS Servers, and Google Maps.. <-- on my PC

                        Gmail, Google Voice, Google Search, Google Maps, Google Navigation, and the market place.. <--Phone

                        Oh ya and my firmware for my phone, and soon to be operating system for PC will be made by Google.

                        So ya, them censoring results will definitely hurt them.

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                        • #13
                          Point which everyone seems to be ignoring is that the BPI thinks "this would be a very effective tool to decrease piracy." Which is simply retarded. They are just grasping at straws for any possible reason to say "Oh! This is why sales have been on a downward slope for years!" They're willing to blame absolutely everything they can in hopes that one day they'll get something that will slow down/halt the decrease in sales. Which as any normal sane person will tell you, will NEVER happen.

                          I hope google censors the shit out of the top results (links should still come up, maybe on the later pages after the 'legal' downloading sites.) and the auto-complete just so the BPI looks just as stupid as always when they see that this attempt has completely failed to even put a minor dent in the 'problem.'

                          If people want something for free bad enough they will get it. This is the way its always been, technology has simply made it easier to do. It is IMPOSSIBLE to fight. It doesnt matter if they censor the auto-complete and the first 100 pages of results, people will go though as many as it takes to get what they want for no effort/work/money.

                          Any smart business, which apparently the record industry is not, would see this downloading as an inevitable new cost of manufacturing and would attempt to work with it to benefit them. There have been numerous VERY GOOD ideas set infront of them of ways to use torrenting and multiple other 'illegal' downloadings as free advertisements and other advances to help the industry, but they blindly ignore what COULD help them to continue spending even more money doing something that will never yield any different results, which is the text book definition of insanity.

                          They have done this in the past, threw hissy fits for years about the new "thing" that was going to "ruin" them. They did the same thing when radio shifted from playing only live recordings to songs off of albums. Eventually they settled that with a fee per plays to the label from the stations. It didnt ruin them, if they stopped getting all the fees they get from radio stations the companies would still survive because today, the radio is considered music's single best advertisement system. When the VCR came out the Movie industry threw a hissy. When TV started playing movies, they threw a hissy. Both advancements ended up helping once they were used correctly by the industry.

                          So my question is, when do they finally wake up, realize they do this EVERY TIME, skip all the bullshit crying in the middle, accept it and use it to their advantage like they do everything else.
                          Last edited by Josh; December 17, 2010, 05:01 AM.
                          <Lardo>josh you rule
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                          Toast 2013!
                          Thanks to DocDoom for my pretty much as sweet as they come avatar. He was also cooler for about 15 seconds when he changed his name.sigpic

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                          • #14
                            can you blame them?

                            ---------- Post added at 05:02 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:02 PM ----------

                            everyone wants their piece of the pie, even music record companies... can you blame them?
                            everyone wants their piece of the pie, even music record companies... can you blame them?

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