Microsoft Copyright Infringement Mistakes


Recently it came to light that Microsoft’s copyright infringement automated software has recently wrongly sent requests for page removal for a number of innocent sites including CNN, Wikipedia and the BBC plus its micro site CBeebies.

internet marketingThe software had sent automated removal requests under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). A successful request means the content does not appear in search rankings.

Although these sites and others including Buzzfeed, the Huffington Post and Techcrunch - were happily not removed from Google search results others were not so lucky.

AMC Theatres and RealClearPolitics, who were also wrongly accused, had pages removed from Google SERPS.

45 the not so Magic Number

The pages targeted appeared on a list published by Chilling Effects, a website which logs legal complaints about online activity. It is backed by several academic institutes such as Harvard and Stanford, as well as campaign group the Electronic Frontiers Foundation.

Oddly the removal request, sent in July, contained hundreds of addresses, and appeared to pinpoint articles and pages containing the number 45.

For example, a BBC page following Day 45 of the Olympic Torch Relay was on the takedown list.

It’s a worrying thought that innocent sites can be targeted in this way. While it is understandable that large organisations like Microsoft need to use automation to protect their copyrights at the same time their needs to be systems in place to make sure innocent site are not being caught and removed from search results by mistake!

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