The pirate’s life is not the marketing life for Google
Over the past two years, the American Multinational Google has been repeatedly subjected to criticisms from media, music and film companies alike over its alleged failure to sufficiently combat piracy on its terrain. In particular, the inadequacy of its filtering system has been consistently highlighted as a driving factor behind the serial levels of pirate advertising on its search engine, with calls for an update and revamp growing stronger with every month that passes.
In a previous piracy report, Google had sought to counter criticisms by highlighting that in 2013, it received 224,000 requests from the DMCA to takedown results breaching compliancy regulations, successfully adhering to a monumental 99% of them. This was actually up from the more-than-respectable results of 2012, where a far larger 57 million requests were made, and 97% were dealt with.
However, it appears that the search engine kings have finally taken the sentiments of critics seriously, announcing that they will officially refresh their filtering system next week; so that it is optimised to be superior at identifying individuals who breach copyright laws.
The new update – entitled Pirate Update 2 – will be released over the next week, in tandem with all-new advertisement formats, which Google argues will collectively diminish the threat of piracy on its domains.
In a statement from the company over the new update, Google identified: “We’ve now refined the signal in ways we expect to visibly affect the rankings of some of the most notorious sites,” says Google. It’s also extending this system to “demoting autocomplete predictions that return results with many DMCA demoted sites.”
So, what exactly does the pirate update do?
Much like its other Google counterparts – Penguin and Panda – the Pirate update functions like a filter. Essentially, Google evaluates all the sites which it has indexed and puts them through the pirate filter. Any websites which are adjudged to have breached copyright regulations will be penalised and experience a loss of ranking or visibility levels.
All offending parties are then forced to stay penalised until the next pirate update is launched – a stark reality for anyone who suffered from the previous edition of the update. Providing that the guilty party receives a less complaints during this period, Google should reinstate them into their rankings. However, any conclusive light cannot be shed on this because the latest version marks the occasion of the first update since the initial filter was launched back in August 2012.
The news also means that any individuals who were at risk of being penalised from breaching copyright regulations back in 2012 have managed to escape paying their dues, though a fresh batch of people are now in the firing line for what’s set to be Google’s biggest initiative against copyright in its history.
Modified advertisement formats
Google have also recently unveiled a new advertisement in regards to queries where individuals may attempt to stream or download movies from pirate websites:
Google has also outlined that it is testing new sidebar displays for music artists and films for certain queries:
The final update Google have confirmed is to their auto-complete facility on their search engine, which automatically produces a list of the most commonly searched queries for single letter insertions or parts of popular, long-tail keywords. Google has confirmed that they will display a smaller number of results in auto-complete in cases where the query itself is aimed at finding a site which has had a DMCA request filed against them.