RIAA report bashes Google's anti-piracy efforts as ineffective

By on February 21, 2013, 5:00 PM

A new report issued by the RIAA lambasts Google's piracy-curbing efforts, claiming the search giant's promise to demote unsavory file sharing sites several months ago has shown "no demonstrable impact" on the demotion or removal of links to well-known copyright violators. The music agency reports that "serial infringers" -- identified as such based on the number of take down requests Google has received -- appear on the Google's first page of search results a whopping 98 percent of the time.

Additionally, the RIAA says well-known and legitimate sources, like iTunes and Spotify, were drowned out by seedy, unauthorized websites nearly half the time.

"Well-known, authorized download sites, such as iTunes, Amazon and eMusic, only appeared in the top ten results for a little more than half of the searches. This means that a site for which Google has received thousands of copyright removal requests was almost 8 times more likely to show up in a search result than an authorized music download site."

Source: RIAA, Google Report Card (2013)

Those "top 10" results are important to the RIAA, as 94 percent of Googlers don't make it past the first results page.

Suggestions provided by Google's auto-complete also drew the RIAA's criticism. The 15-page report claims that 88 percent of its test searches for popular songs provided automatic suggestions which added "piracy related" terms to its queries.

Although the search giant hasn't responded to the RIAA's report, Google might contend that it already does much more to counter piracy than required by law. Google has long fought against government interference when it comes to filtering search results, but continues to refine its own, voluntary anti-piracy efforts with ranking penalties, deploying automated filtering systems and modifying its autocomplete results to exclude chancy suggestions.

Alongside those efforts though, Google has aimed to strike a balance. The company publicizes copyright takedown requests and has backed certain sites accused of -- but perhaps not clearly -- violating the DMCA.

Americans seem to have mixed feelings on whether Google should play a more proactive role in filtering pirated materials. However, one survey showed that the vast majority of Americans would prefer Google censor pirated materials than involve the U.S. government.




User Comments: 16

Got something to say? Post a comment
4 people like this | Guest said:

Just shut down the internet already.

Maybe that would stop music and movie companies from whinning, oh wait then they would cry about low digital sales.

2 people like this | captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

No problem with demoting all the "good" sites. From now on, I'll just start reading Google search results at page 10 or so!

Win7Dev said:

I could care less if google stopped piracy or not.

mrcavooter mrcavooter said:

Stop trying to censor the web.

1 person liked this | cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

RIAA must be morons, if they think one search engine can put a dent in anti-piracy efforts.

2 people like this | Ranger12 Ranger12 said:

Well of course they bash googles efforts. If they admitted google was doing a good job of it, not that it's googles job, then the riaa would have even less of a reason to exist.

avoidz avoidz said:

Nothing will satisfy those fools.

Guest said:

So are those ridiculous copyright letters my ISP keeps forwarding to me.

Get one, discard it

Get another one, discard it

Get another one, discard it

Final Notice to call ISP. Call ISP and talk to Lady, I blame it on unsecured wireless, she is nice and apologizes for the inconvenience.

Two weeks later

Get another one, discard it... and so on and so forth

It has been like this for two years and running.

captainawesome captainawesome said:

It's become a knee-jerk reaction for me to sigh when I read or hear the term "RIAA".

Such u a useless bunch of politicians.

The irony of it all is that the actual artists would prolly be better off if RIAA didn't exist at all!

ShadowDeath said:

I can't help but notice all this chatter about Copyright infringement, RIAA, MPAA, and "OMG I've been hacked but we have no idea how or where they hacked us" right as CISPA pops back into the media.

Guest said:

Google is providing the RIAA a list of all the offenders in the search results. The RIAA should just deal directly with those sites. The RIAA needs to do their own leg work when it come to enforcing copyright.

richalone442 said:

I just love it when the RIAA cry s about pirating, you know no body cares what those a**holes think, and we sure aren't to worked up that a rich artist will not be able to afford the newest private jet he or she wants, or has to buy a measly 6 million dollar home instead of the 10 million dollar one he or she thinks they deserve. The RIAA has screwed around with the numbers for so long and so often that no one takes them seriously, We all know that pirating is good for sales because it introduces bands to people that would never have otherwise heard about them(their Music, Movies, books,etc.) The people at the RIAA are just too stupid to understand how things really work. If anything we should pity the artist that are represented by these ignorant fools, wait, I don't feel sorry for the artist either.

Tygerstrike said:

@rich

Im sorry but your rant makes less of a justification for theft then the usual 'I wanted it". Who cares how much money any other individual has? Who cares if piracy introduced new bands to ppl. Big whoop. What the RIAA and the artist it represents is concerned about is purely the lost revenue because of piracy. Its all about the money. ANYONE can find any reason to justify theft to themselves. None of those justifications would carry any weight in court. And guess what, thats where ppl will start ending up. In court.

Ranger12 Ranger12 said:

So are those ridiculous copyright letters my ISP keeps forwarding to me.

Get one, discard it

Get another one, discard it

Get another one, discard it

Final Notice to call ISP. Call ISP and talk to Lady, I blame it on unsecured wireless, she is nice and apologizes for the inconvenience.

Two weeks later

Get another one, discard it... and so on and so forth

It has been like this for two years and running.

You're obviously not a very good pirate of you're regularly getting letters from your ISP.

I just love it when the RIAA cry s about pirating, you know no body cares what those a**holes think, and we sure aren't to worked up that a rich artist will not be able to afford the newest private jet he or she wants, or has to buy a measly 6 million dollar home instead of the 10 million dollar one he or she thinks they deserve. The RIAA has screwed around with the numbers for so long and so often that no one takes them seriously, We all know that pirating is good for sales because it introduces bands to people that would never have otherwise heard about them(their Music, Movies, books,etc.) The people at the RIAA are just too stupid to understand how things really work. If anything we should pity the artist that are represented by these ignorant fools, wait, I don't feel sorry for the artist either.

Whatever makes you feel better when your sitting in a jail cell. I quit pirating long ago because I realized my life is worth far more than a few songs and a movie. Some things are worth giving everything for, free movies and music isn't one of them.

IAMTHESTIG said:

RIAA has the wrong approach... people pirate for two reasons, 1; its free and 2; its easy. We are now starting to get companies like Netflix and Amazon that are providing media at a reasonable or excellent cost, and making it easy. THAT is what will stop piracy. The RIAA needs to embrace technology and how excellent pricing can drive consumer demand. Look at how well Steam is doing with all their great sales. It's a proven method that works. The RIAA just looks like a bunch of greedy geriatrics that care more about money and **** blocking the ease of online content delivery.

treetops treetops said:

I pirate movies I can get on netflix sometimes, simply because the quality is better.

Load all comments...

Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.