Google Calls Its Report on Government Takedown Requests “Troubling,” “Free Expression Is At Risk”

Via Google’s Official Blog:

About two years ago, we launched our interactive Transparency Report. We started by disclosing data about government requests. Since then, we’ve been steadily adding new features, like graphs showing traffic patterns and disruptions to Google services from different countries. And just a couple weeks ago, we launched a new section showing the requests we get from copyright holders to remove search results.

The traffic and copyright sections of the Transparency Report are refreshed in near-real-time, but government request data is updated in six-month increments because it’s a people-driven, manual process. Today we’re releasing data showing government requests to remove blog posts or videos or hand over user information made from July to December 2011.

Unfortunately, what we’ve seen over the past couple years has been troubling, and today is no different. When we started releasing this data in 2010, we also added annotations with some of the more interesting stories behind the numbers. We noticed that government agencies from different countries would sometimes ask us to remove political content that our users had posted on our services. We hoped this was an aberration. But now we know it’s not.

This is the fifth data set that we’ve released. And just like every other time before, we’ve been asked to take down political speech. It’s alarming not only because free expression is at risk, but because some of these requests come from countries you might not suspect—Western democracies not typically associated with censorship…

Read More: Google’s Official Blog

 

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  • 6Blackie6

     Censorship, it can’t happen here.
     Censorship, it can’t happen here.
     Censorship, it can’t happen here.
     Censorship, ** ***** ****** **** **.

  • http://buzzcoastin.posterous.com BuzzCoastin

    The US was the biggest offender in these actions.
    The US (Land of the Free) had 12,243 and
    Google rolled over for Uncle Homeland 93% of the time.
    “The number of (US) content removal requests we received increased by 103%
    compared to the previous reporting period.”

    So Google won’t tolerate any kinda shit from Commie China
    but Google will roll over for Uncle Homeland 93% of the time.
    Gotta love the hypocrisy of the Land of the Free to be obedient.

     

  • GERM

    UNFORTUNATELY CORPORATIONS RUN THIS COUNTRY, AND IF I REMEMBER THE CORRECTLY CORPORATIONS CAN NOT VOTE IN ANY ELECTION. THERE IS ACTUALLY 1 EXCEPTION TO THIS, IF I AM INCORPORATED AS AN INDIVIDUAL I CAN VOTE UNLESS THE GOVERNMENT DOES NOT WANT ME TO.

    • Anarchy Pony

      YOU LEFT YOUR CAPS LOCK ON. CONTRARY TO POPULAR BELIEF, CAPS LOCK IS NOT CRUISE CONTROL FOR AWESOME.

  • charlieprimero

    Hahaha.  Yeah right.  “We’re sooooooo concerned about this”.

    Google is being actively hypocritical and deceptive.  For years Google has contracted with various elements of the US Intelligence Community, including the Office of Research and Development at the Central Intelligence Agency and data monitoring CIA venture capital firm In-Q-Tel.  http://www.iqt.org

  • Haystack

    This is what I found. 

    If Google gets a DMCA takedown notice, they indicate that some results have been removed from their search results, and give you a link to the takedown notice. The takedown notice contains a lengthy list of all the URLs where the thing you are looking for can be found. Many of those links will be dead for the same reason, but a certain percent will still work. This means that the takedown notice actually gives you a more comprehensive (i.e., compiled by lawyers, by hand) index of sites that have you file than Google ordinarily would. 

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