The UK Minister for Culture plus representatives from the MPAA, BPI, Google and four major ISPs met for a roundtable discussion on the issue of online piracy last month. The minutes of the meeting suggest that not only are the parties keen for site blocking to continue, but are considering whether the same High Court mechanism could be used to provide Google with a legal basis on which to delist sites.
Perhaps unsurprisingly at this point is how rightsholders and the authorities are increasingly putting pressure on Google. Ed Vaizey said the UK Government now wants to see the issue of infringing search results “addressed and producing tangible results.”
Censoring search via legal action?
While the wrangling over algorithm adjustment has been heard many times before, what followed next appears to be something quite new. Noting that an analysis is under way to investigate the role of search engines on infringement, the discussion turned to how the law might have a role to play in manipulating search results.
Current site blocking
New uses for S97a aside, the current process appears to be going quite well, at least as far as the rightsholders are concerned.
Another area discussed was the advertising being placed on unauthorized content sites. Peter Szyszko of whiteBULLET said his company has a system in place funded by ad networks looking to protect their brands. It contains a database of 150,000 sites which have been scored for ad suitability.