Google is to change how its search engine deals with copyright material to make it harder for it to be used by thieves and counterfeiters.
In a blog post on Thursday Google general counsel Kent Walker said the search company would make four changes to its algorithm to be implemented over the next few months. These are:
- To respond to "reliable copyright takedown requests" within 24 hours. Google said it would provide tools to improve the submission process to make it easier for rights holders to submit takedown requests for Google products, starting with Blogger and Web Search. "For copyright owners who use the tools responsibly, we'll reduce our average response time to 24 hours or less. At the same time, we'll improve our "counter-notice" tools for those who believe their content was wrongly removed and enable public searching of takedown requests," Walker said.
- Google would also stop terms that were closely associated with piracy from appearing in Autocomplete. But it said this was hard because of uncertainty over the intended use of search terms.
- Walker promised Google would work with rights holders to prevent AdSense from displaying infringing materials, and to "expel violators".
- Finally it would experiment with making authorised preview content more readily accessible in search results.
- "Not surprisingly, we're big fans of making authorised content more accessible on the internet," Walker said. "Most users want to access legitimate content and are interested in sites that make that content available to them (even if only on a preview basis). We'll be looking at ways to make this content easier to index and find."