The perils of operating a search engine business: Copyright holders asked Google to remove more than 345,000,000 allegedly infringing links from its search engine in 2014. The staggering number is an increase of 75% compared to the year before. While Google has taken some steps to downrank pirate sites, the rate at which takedown notices are sent continues to rise.
In the hope of steering prospective customers away from pirate sites, copyright holders are overloading Google with DMCA takedown notices.
These requests have increased dramatically over the years. In 2008, the search engine received only a few dozen takedown notices during the entire year, but today it processes more than a million reported “pirate” links per day.
Google doesn’t report yearly figures, but at TF we processed all the weekly reportsand found that the number of URLs submitted by copyright holders last year surpassed the 345 million mark – 345,169,134 to be exact.
The majority of these requests are honored with the associated links being removed from Google’s search results. However, Google sometimes takes “no action” if they are seemed not to be infringing or if they have been taken down previously.
Most takedown requests were sent for the domains 4shared.com, rapidgator.net and uploaded.net, with more than five million targeted URLs each. The UK Music industry group BPI is the top copyright holder of 2014, good for more than 60 million reported links.