Thursday, January 27, 2011

Google censors piracy related keywords

After a lot of pressure from entertainment industries like the Motion Picture Association of America, Google has finally (and silently) started censoring certain keywords from Instant suggestions and Autocomplete. It no longer completes words like 'torr...'

No matter how hard you try, you just won't squeeze the results out

They have seemingly set a hard list of search terms that just won't spark a light in the search engine's brain. You cannot search for 'uTorrent', which is not at all an illegal program. You can't even search for BitTorrent, which is the name of the torrenting protocol, and also the company that developed it. Nothing illegal again. MegaUpload and RapidSearch don't work either, though they are not completely illegitimate sites. Google Instant works perfectly upto 'mega' and just doesn't display results on its own after you type the 'upl...' part. However, once you complete the word, you start getting normal searches again. If you press Enter even halfway, the results are pretty much normal.

On running a quick shot for The Pirate Bay or 4Shared, I saw that they had not been censored. According to me, TPB is the one that should be removed, and not BitTorrent.

The people over at TorrentFreak contacted BitTorrent, and Simon Morris of BT said:
"We respect Google’s right to determine algorithms to deliver appropriate search results to user requests. That being said, our company’s trademarked name is fairly unique, and we’re pretty confident that anyone typing the first six or seven letters deserves the same easy access to results as with any other company search"
read more here.

What do you think? Write up in the comments.