FEATURE: Exponential Growth for Google Copyright Takedowns
Internet hoster and universal browser, Google, has seen a sizable increase in Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) takedown notices, recording just over 75 million last week for the month of March. The DMCA signed by Bill Clinton back in 1998 states that sites such as Google are not liable for the material they host, provided they respond to a copyright complaint in a timely manner.
The DMCA is favorable to content owners who seek to keep pirate websites out of search results and invisible to those searching leaked album downloads, movies and other various types of media. Unfortunately this system allows for DMCA spamming – big copyright holders know how the system works and sites are liable to assume guilty until proven innocent since the majority do not want to be privy to any lawsuit.
These copyright holders are using bots to trawl hosting sites and search engines, such as Google, to find any content that may be infringing and then order Google to take it down. It is recorded that Google is handling roughly 75 million DCMA requests every month for search alone, a vast increase from the hundreds of thousands it was handling back in 2011.
Is this activity reflective of the DCMA working as intended on its unending quest to rid the internet of copyright material? Or, are numerous valid links simply getting caught in the barrage of DMCA spam requests?
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