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Google last year declined more than ten million adverts suspected of infringing copyright or linking to infringing sites, according to a new report by the company.
Cedric Manara, head of copyright at Google, shared findings from the 64-page “How Google Fights Piracy” report in a blog post today, November 7.
Manara said that Google has invested significantly in technology and resources to prevent infringement on its platforms.
“These efforts appear to be having an effect: around the world, online piracy has been decreasing, while spending on legitimate content is rising across content categories,” Manara said.
In 2017, roughly 882 million webpages were requested to be removed from more than 586,000 unique domains or top-level domain sites, the report said. Google removed more than 95% of these webpages.
Last year, the number of URLs listed in take-down requests decreased by 9% year-on-year, reversing a long-term trend which had previously seen the number of URLs increasing each year, Google noted.
Google also claimed that it supports the creative industries in its policies and procedures.
For example, Google-owned music platform YouTube paid more than $1.8 billion to the music industry between October 2017 and September 2018, and the industry has earned more than $6 billion in total advertising revenue from YouTube.
Google added that it has invested more than $100 million in Content ID, YouTube’s copyright management system, launched in 2007.
As a result of this investment, “Content ID can now catch efforts to evade detection like changing a video’s aspect ratio, flipping images horizontally, and speeding up or slowing down the audio”, the report said.
In his blog post, Manara explained that Google has five principles guiding its investment in fighting piracy.
The first is to develop products which make it easy for users to access legitimate content—such as YouTube and Google Play Music. These provides consumers with choice and drive revenue for creative industries.
Next on the list is to cut off the supply. Google does not allow those engaging in copyright infringement to use its advertising and monetisation systems, preventing them from making money.
Third, Google’s improved procedures allow the platform to process copyright removal requests for search results at the rate of millions per week.
Another principle is to guard against abuse of the system, such as false infringement claims being used to remove content people do not want online. Google is committed to detecting and rejecting such allegations.
Finally, Google emphasised its commitment to transparency. In its “Transparency Report”, the company shares information such as the number of take-down requests it has received from copyright owners and governments.
Manara concluded: “Through continued innovation and partnership, we’re committed to curtailing infringement by bad actors while empowering the creative communities who make many of the things we love about the internet today.”
Google, online copyright infringement, piracy, infringing advertising, YouTube, Content ID, music industry, take-down requests, market research