Google’s “Transparency” Masquerade

There are many stories coming out today about Google providing information about the quantity of DMCA take-down requests to which they respond.

According to VentureBeat, “ In the past month, the report indicates that 1,246,854 URLs have been targeted for removal from over 24,000 domains.”

The picture being painted by the anti-copyright press is that Google is doing their part to help copyright owners.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  If we just look at one search for “Adele Download” we see 138,000,000 search results.  This number of 138 million is the number of times that Google estimates that it sees the word “Adele” and the word “Download” on a web page (URL) that they are tracking to be included in search results.  The screenshot below is 90 pages deep into these search results.

So Google is trying to get people to think that processing 1.2 million take-down requests a month is somehow helping enforce copyright, when their own search engine shows 138 million results for just one artist’s links to downloads, 99.9% of which are to links that not only violate copyright but provide the copyrighted product for free, many with advertisements served by companies that Google owns.

Additionally, the top two web sites on page 90 are for the web site (see hundreds of links to pirate sites on all 90 pages).  If there was any pretense of Google actually helping enforce copyright, they would simply not display search results from 4shared that include the word “Adele.”  How would they know that is different from or Because they have received literally thousands of take-down requests for the word Adele on the web site for months, and keeps posting links to illegal Adele downloads.  Google is in possession of copious data that show that and probably most of the other 24,000 domains are REPEAT INFRINGERS and should not enjoy the same free speech protections as or from which they have received little or no DMCA take-down requests.  In our opinion, the reason why they appear to willfully ignore the logical ethical response of discontinuing showing links to in “Adele Download” searches is because they make billions from playing this cat and mouse game with the law.  It is our opinion that this behavior deprives thousands of people of their legitimate income and benefits no one save for enriching Google and their illegitimate business partners who profit from providing illegal access to content.

It takes a team of professionals to get a great product like her’s to market, most of whom are not wealthy and many who depend on royalties from music sales.  When people buy her music, many people who are not wealthy receive their fair compensation for their work.  Google made $14 billion in profit in the last twelve months in part by getting paid to direct people to obtaining Adele’s music for free and depriving many, many people of their legitimate income.

Lastly, due to Google’s current practices of willfully ignoring web sites that repeatedly assist people in stealing content, copyright owners, who are already experiencing reduced revenues due to piracy, now have to pay money to technology companies to find these URLs and send the take-down notices to Google.  This was not how the Safe Harbor given to companies like Google was intended to work.  It was not intended to enrich gatekeepers like Google and reduce the income and wages of content creators.