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October 16, 2015

The Honorable Daniel H. Marti


United States Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator
Executive Office of the President, Office of Management and Budget
725 17th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20503
Re:

Development of the Joint Strategic Plan on Intellectual Property Enforcement


FR Doc. 2015-21289 (August 21, 2015)

Dear Enforcement Coordinator Marti:


Google Inc. (Google) appreciates the opportunity to submit comments in connection with the Office of
Management and Budget (the Office) Request: Development of the Joint Strategic Plan on Intellectual
Property Enforcement, 80 Fed. Reg. 169. We share the Offices interest in improving the efficiency and
effectiveness of the U.S. governments intellectual property enforcement efforts. We are therefore
pleased to describe some of the voluntary measures Google has taken to combat piracy and counterfeiting,
and propose strategies to ensure that the U.S. continues to incentivize creativity, protect rightsholders, and
grow the creative economy.
The Current State of the Creative Economy
The Internet is one of the greatest success stories in the U.S. economy, responsible in past years for 15%
of U.S. GDP growth.1 More than $8 trillion in commerce is now conducted online each year.2 The
growth of the Internet and its user platforms has ushered in an explosion of creativity and free expression.
More music, video, software, and all kinds of media are being created by more people than ever before.3
The new opportunities and low barriers to entry made possible by digital tools and online distribution are
transforming every kind of creative endeavor, both amateur and professional.
U.S. law has supported the Internets growth by adopting a balanced approach to intellectual property
rights, employing a flexible legal framework that protects rightsholders while also promoting innovation.
This has allowed digital platforms like Google Play, Spotify, Deezer, YouTube, iTunes, Netflix, Amazon,
1

McKinsey Global Institute, Internet matters: The Nets sweeping impact on growth, jobs, and prosperity (May
2011), available at http://www.mckinsey.com/insights/high_tech_telecoms_internet/internet_matters.
2
Id.
3
Computer & Communications Industry Association, the sky is rising (Oct. 2014), available at
https://www.ccianet.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Sky-Is-Rising-2014.pdf.


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Hulu, and hundreds of others to make content legally available online to consumers throughout the world.
The presence of legal sources of desirable content online is the single greatest force against piracy; where
consumers have legal options to get the content they want, they overwhelmingly choose the legal options
over pirated sources. The success of Spotify in Sweden led to a significant reduction in file sharing of
music on The Pirate Bay and other websites.4 Online platforms made possible by the balanced approach
to IP protection are driving billions of dollars of revenue to the entertainment industries that might
otherwise be lost to piracy.
A key part of the U.S.s balanced approach to intellectual property are the DMCA safe harbors, which
established a set of responsibilities to be shared between copyright owners and service providers. At the
heart of the safe harbor framework is a notice-and-takedown process created by Congress. The DMCA
safe harbors have proven to be remarkably successful at their underlying aim to encourage investment
in new technologies by reducing the uncertainties created by copyright law, while also giving copyright
owners effective tools to address infringement online.
In addition to the DMCA safe harbors, fair use which is enshrined in Section 107 of the U.S. Copyright
Act also plays an important role in allowing the Internet to flourish and drive U.S. economic growth and
job creation. A balanced approach to enforcement must respect copyrights flexible limitations and
exceptions, without which the online platforms, search engines, and social media networks that are
fueling new creativity and revenue streams for all parts of the creative ecosystem today would not exist.
Striking this healthy balance has led to phenomenal results in terms of economic growth in the U.S.
Industries relying upon fair use have more than $4.5 trillion in annual revenue and employ 17 million
people.5
Googles Efforts to Fight Piracy
Google is a leader in addressing copyright infringement online. Copyright owners have used the DMCA
provisions to request that Google remove from its search index more than 400 million webpages thus far
in 2015. We process more takedown notices, and faster, than any other search engine. We receive
notices for a tiny fraction of everything we host and index, which nonetheless amounts to millions of
copyright removal requests per week that are processed, on average, in under six hours. In addition,
Google uses the information it receives through the notice-and-takedown process to demote sites for
which we have received a high number of removal notices. Our search algorithm factors in the number of
copyright removal notices received for a given site when ranking search results, helping users find

Copia, The Carrot or the Stick? (Oct. 8. 2015), available at https://copia.is/library/the-carrot-or-the-stick/.


Computer & Communications Industry Association, Fair Use in the U.S. Economy (2011), available at
http://cdn.ccianet.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/CCIA-FairUseintheUSEconomy-2011.pdf.


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legitimate sources of content more easily. The changes made to our algorithm have been highly effective
in demoting sites receiving a high number of takedown notices.6
Weve also been testing new ads formats and panels on search result pages for queries related to music
and movies to help people find legitimate sources of media. For the relatively small number of queries
for music and movies that include terms like download, free, watch, or mp3, weve worked with
partners to point people to quick and compelling authorized sources.7 And last year, we also began
removing more terms from autocomplete predictions based on DMCA removal notices.
Google has also worked with this Office on best practices aimed at raising antipiracy standards across the
entire online advertising industry. We were among the first companies to certify compliance in the
Interactive Advertising Bureaus (IAB) Quality Assurance Certification program, through which
participating advertising companies take steps to enhance buyer control over the placement and context of
advertising and build brand safety. This program helps ensure that advertisers and their agents are able to
control where their ads appear across the web.
We also worked with the Office and other leading ad networks to develop groundbreaking Best Practices
and Guidelines for Ad Networks to Address Piracy and Counterfeiting.8 Under these voluntary best
practices, ad networks maintain and post policies prohibiting websites that are principally dedicated to
engaging in piracy or counterfeiting from participating in the ad networks advertising programs. By
working across the industry, these follow the money best practices target the financial incentives for
pirate sites by cutting off the flow of ad revenue to operators of sites engaged in piracy or counterfeiting
while continuing to promote digital innovation. Thanks in large part to the leadership of this Office, there
is a major opportunity to now expand the online advertising sectors commitment to combating piracy and
counterfeiting by seeking additional signatories from the hundreds of remaining ad networks. In light of
the growth of this dynamic sector, there would be real benefit in engaging with ad networks to encourage
broader participation in these voluntary commitments.
In 2014 and 2015, we also participated in the Department of Commerces long-running Internet Policy
Task Force multistakeholder process, convened by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and
the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), aimed at improving the
operation of the DMCA notice-and-takedown system. As proposed in its Green Paper on Copyright
6

searchmetrics SEO Blog, Google Pirate Update Analysis and Loser List (Oct. 26, 2014), available at
http://blog.searchmetrics.com/us/2014/10/26/google-pirate-update-analysis-and-loser-list/.
7
Google Public Policy Blog, Continued progress on fighting piracy (Oct. 17, 2014), available at
http://googlepublicpolicy.blogspot.com/2014/10/continued-progress-on-fighting-piracy.html.
8
Google Public Policy Blog, Ad Networks Agree on Industry Best Practices to Combat Piracy and Counterfeiting
(July 15, 2013), available at http://googlepublicpolicy.blogspot.com/2013/07/ad-networks-agree-on-industrybest.html.


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Policy, Creativity, and Innovation in the Digital Economy, the Internet Policy Task Force
multistakeholder meetings, calls, and working groups focused participants on the development of
voluntary measures to make the system more efficient and effective, resulting in the published DMCA
Notice-and-Takedown Processes: List of Good, Bad and Situational Practices, which identifies a
number of practices to improve the efficiency of the handling and processing of DMCA notices by both
senders and recipients.9
Finally, this year, as your Office is aware, Google is participating in the ongoing discussions and
development of best practices arising out of the Trustworthy Accountability Groups (TAG) Antipiracy
Working Group, which is also focused on bringing stakeholders together including advertisers,
rightsholders, and platforms to develop additional best practices and tools to prevent the placement of
online ads on websites dedicated to piracy or the sale of counterfeit goods.
For video content, no other online platform has done more to fight piracy or paid more royalties to the
content industry than YouTube. When a video is uploaded, it is compared to our database of millions of
fingerprints corresponding to copyrighted works by Googles Content ID system. Using this service,
which YouTube has invested more than $60 million to develop, copyright owners can identify useruploaded videos that include their content, and choose in advance what they want to happen when those
videos are found. They can opt to block the video from appearing, choose instead to monetize the video
with advertising, or simply leave the video on the site for its promotional value. Content ID gives
copyright owners full control in protecting and monetizing their intellectual property rights. The choice
of most copyright owners has been to allow the video to be posted and monetized with advertising.
Content ID has generated more than $1 billion in revenue for the content industry. There are currently
more than 4,000 partners on YouTube, including all the major movie studios and record labels.10
For more information, please see the attached report How Google Fights Piracy.

United States Patent and Trademark Office, U.S. Commerce Department Announces Digital Millennium Copyright
Act Multistakeholder Forum Results (April 7, 2015), available at http://www.uspto.gov/about-us/news-updates/uscommerce-department-announces-digital-millennium-copyright-act.
10
See Variety, Ranking the Top 12 Digital Stars: Varietys #Famechangers (July 22, 2015), available at
http://variety.com/2015/digital/news/variety-famechangers-youtubers-pewdiepie-1201545222/; Mashable, Being a
YouTuber Is Now a Real Business (July 1, 2014), available at http://mashable.com/2014/07/01/vidcon-youtubebusiness/#S6IDGQEhXsqW; BloombergBusiness, Hollywoods Big-Money YouTube Hit Factory (Aug. 28, 2014),
available at http://www.bloomberg.com/bw/articles/2014-08-28/youtube-hollywoods-hit-factory-for-teenentertainment; Washington Post, YouTube sensation Lindsey Stirling on how the Internet can shape the music
industry (May 29, 2014), available at https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-switch/wp/2014/05/29/youtubesensation-lindsey-stirling-on-how-the-internet-can-shape-the-music-industry/.


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Googles Efforts to Fight Counterfeiting


Google has zero tolerance for counterfeit in search ads. Weve dedicated considerable human and
engineering resources across the company to develop and implement measures to root out counterfeit
from AdWords, our main advertising platform. The reactive component of our anti-counterfeit measures
involves a robust counterfeit complaint and removal process. We have a simple and accessible complaint
form for reporting ads that may promote counterfeit goods. This form can be submitted by consumers, as
well as trademark owners. In response to a valid complaint, Google will take action within 24 hours. In
most instances, we terminate the account and disable the domain so the advertiser and site are banned
from AdWords.
The proactive component of our anti-counterfeit measures involves sophisticated automated systems our
engineering teams have developed. Theyre based on advanced risk models that rely on thousands of data
signals to detect fraudulent activity by advertisers, including counterfeiting. Our automated systems are
highly effective. Over 99% of the AdWords accounts terminated on counterfeit grounds are detected by
these systems. In addition, due to continuous enhancements to these systems, counterfeiters are
increasingly unable to circumvent our detection methods. Were now seeing a decrease in counterfeiters
infiltrating AdWords; for instance, we shut down approximately 7,000 accounts on counterfeit grounds in
2014, down from 14,000 in 2013.
Brandowners can also submit court orders obtained against unlawful sites to Google. Google offers an
online form for submission of court orders adjudicating content to be unlawful. The court orders simply
need to identify webpages that contain illegal content and Google will remove the pages voluntarily from
our search results.11
For more information regarding Googles efforts to fight counterfeiting, please see the attached report
How Google Fights the Advertisement of Counterfeited Goods.
Recommendations for Improving IP Enforcement
We recommend that the U.S. promote balanced legal frameworks at home and abroad, which protect
rightsholders while encouraging investment in new technologies and giving individuals the freedom to
innovate. Unbalanced enforcement policies fail to serve the long-term interests of rightsholders (who
derive an increasing percent of their revenue from digital distribution and benefit when new online
distribution methods are developed and scaled), Internet platforms (who create new ways to deliver
content to users around the world), and users (who develop creative new ways to interact with content and
creators) and could have the effect of damaging the U.S.s economic growth by stifling online creativity
11

Google Help Center, Legal Removal Requests, available at


https://support.google.com/legal/answer/3110420?product=websearch&rd=2.


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and expression. Below are proposed strategies to further strengthen balanced intellectual property
enforcement and grow the creative economy:

Encourage Growth of Access to Legitimate Digital Content: Piracy thrives when consumer
demand goes unmet by legitimate supply. Online services like Google Play, Spotify, Netflix, and
iTunes have demonstrated that the most effective way to combat piracy on the web is to offer
attractive legal alternatives to consumers. Supply-based initiatives, focused on making lawfully
available to consumers the content that they want, are a key part of voluntary industry-led efforts
to fight online piracy. We encourage the Office to continue identifying barriers to licensing
content to help promote legitimate alternatives.

Seek Feedback from Rightsholders on Obstacles to Targeting Foreign-Based Rogue Sites


at the Source: Because actions by intermediaries are never as good as effective judicial systems
to enforce copyright and trademark rights, the Office may also consider seeking feedback from
rightsholders to better understand what obstacles they encounter that prevent them from bringing
civil suits against rogue actors in foreign courts, and whether the Office can recommend
improvements to streamline enforcement tools to attack bad faith actors dedicated to piracy and
counterfeiting at their source.

Evaluate Proposals for Streamlining MLA Process: To better enable the targeted and
effective coordination of law enforcement where rogue websites dedicated to piracy or
counterfeiting are based abroad, the Office may also consider reviewing potential reforms to the
Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA) process to ensure appropriate cooperation between U.S. and
foreign law enforcement to prosecute bad actors at their source.

Modernize the U.S. Copyright Office: Google is encouraged by the emerging public focus on
how the U.S. Copyright Office can be modernized to improve basic operational and technical
functions including registration and ownership transparency. The Internet now offers
unprecedented abilities to search, create, and access information about creative works.
Transitioning the U.S. Copyright Offices registration and recordation systems to online, userfriendly services, with complete, accurate and accessible registration information (including with
standardized identification codes) would yield efficiencies in the protection, licensing, royalty
payouts, and legitimate uses and enjoyment of these works by the public.

Promote a Balanced Approach to IP Abroad: The U.S. experience proves that a fully
balanced IP framework, including key principles such as safe harbors for online platforms and
fair use, serves as an engine of innovation and creativity for rightsholders, Internet services, and
other stakeholders. As a result, the U.S. should be careful to ensure that when U.S. officials are
promoting IP frameworks around the world they include the full extent of copyright and
trademark limitations and exceptions within those frameworks. Some countries have recently
sought to narrow or eliminate these exceptions with worrisome results not just for U.S.
companies but also for the principle of access to information. For example, in Spain, we
discontinued offering Google News after a new law required all Spanish publications to charge
news services for showing even the smallest snippet from their publications. The global


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competitiveness of U.S. companies depends upon the adoption of clear limitations and exceptions
by other countries, as well as the adoption of appropriate protections from intermediary liability.

Protect Against Predatory Pricing During gTLD Sunrise Periods: Prior to the public launch
of new gTLDs, trademark owners are given an opportunity to register their trademarks as a
second-level domain. This window of time is referred to as the Sunrise Period. Many
trademark owners will take advantage of the Sunrise Period to prevent infringers from registering
a domain for their trademark. Most registries charge a reasonable fee or no additional fee for this
service. Some registries are exploiting the Sunrise Period by charging exorbitant fees to
brandowners, including 10 to 50 times standard pricing. Recent examples include the .sucks
gTLD, which is charging brandowners $2,499 annually to register their trademarks. While it is
important for users to be able to exercise their free speech rights, including through gTLDs,
charging brandowners exorbitant fees for largely defensive registrations does little to protect
consumers. Engagement by this Office to create reasonable limits on Sunrise Period fees would
be beneficial to legitimate brandowners.

Assess Opportunities to Pursue A Uniform Customs Recordation Process Across Borders:


A key part of any anti-counterfeit enforcement program is enlisting the assistance of customs to
seize counterfeits at the border. There are opportunities to makes this process vastly more
efficient for brandowners and enhance its effectiveness. It would be extremely beneficial to have
a single portal where brandowners can record their trademarks in a uniform manner. This
information would then be automatically transmitted to the relevant customs offices. There are
other models to consider, including ones that have garnered support from the International
Trademark Association (INTA) to implement in the U.S., but could be considered for
implementation internationally. For instance, registration of a trademark at a trademark office
would automatically trigger its recordation with the corresponding customs office. Similarly, to
increase information-sharing and efficiency, any renewals of the registration could be
automatically updated at the customs office.

Oppose Whole-Site Removal: It has been suggested that Internet platforms should remove
entire sites from search results, rather than relying on copyright owners to identify specific
infringing pages for removal. Unfortunately, whole-site removal is ineffective and can easily
result in censorship of lawful material. Blogging sites contain millions of pages from hundreds of
thousands of users as do social networking sites, e-commerce sites, and cloud computing services.
All can inadvertently contain material that is infringing. It is rare indeed for a site to consist
wholly of infringing material. This approach was widely rejected by the public and Congress in
2012 when proposed as part of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). The DMCA provides
copyright owners with an effective and efficient framework for removing any infringing page on
a site. Removing or blocking an entire site could not only impinge on free speech by entirely
removing lawful pages that appear on the same site as pages containing infringing content, but it
would also be counterproductive. Whole site removal would simply drive piracy to new domains,
legitimate sites, and social networks. For such rogue websites dedicated to copyright
infringement or counterfeiting sites, a widespread number of IP experts, policymakers and
industry analysts believe that a follow the money approach, which chokes off revenue is most


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effective. Since such sites are dedicated to making money, taking away sources of money is the
most effective approach. Finally, whole-site removal sends the wrong message to other countries
by favoring over-inclusive private censorship over the rule of law. If the U.S. embraces such an
overbroad approach to address domestic law violations (e.g., copyright), it will embolden other
countries to seek similar whole-site removal remedies for violations of their laws (e.g., insults to
the king, dissident political speech). This would jeopardize free speech principles, emerging
services, and the free flow of information online globally and in contexts far removed from
copyright.
*

Google appreciates the opportunity to share its perspective and experience, and we look forward to
continued engagement with the Office on these topics.

ATTACHMENT A

HOW

GOOGLE
FIGH T S

PIR AC Y

Contents

Introduction

Better Legitimate Alternatives to Piracy

YouTube

Google Web Search

13

Advertising

22

Introduction
In the year since this report was first issued in 2013, weve seen countless examples of creators
and major rightsholders around the world benefiting from the web and online platforms. Some
highlights from the past year have been:
O
 ur Content ID system on YouTube, which identifies user-uploaded videos for
rightsholders, won a Primetime Emmy in 2013 and has generated over a billion dollars
for the content industry. Content ID now accounts for more than a third of YouTubes
monetizable views. The majority of partners using Content ID choose to monetize their
claims and many have seen significant increases in their revenue as a result.
F
 ans from around the world come to YouTube to celebrate their favorite content. Whether
it was Pharrells Happy or Let It Go from Disneys movie Frozen, fan communities
from around the world gave studios and record labels alike an incredible amount of
promotion, resulting in longer stays at the box office and at the top of the charts.
A
 rtist and musician Lindsey Stirling told the story of her success on YouTube to the Washington Post,
before her show at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. to celebrate YouTubes 9th birthday.1
YouTube really allows for artists to be leader of their careers, she said in her interview. I started
to put all my energy into learning to market yourself on YouTube [...] It was a very empowering
feeling, because for the first time I could do what I wanted. And I could do it my own way.

At the same time, Google has been participating in a number of workshops and conversations
with policymakers and government agencies around the world aimed at fighting piracy online.
In March of 2014, Google testified before the House Judiciary Committee on the DMCA noticeand-takedown process. In our testimony, we note our own experiences with the notice-andtakedown process, and highlight its importance in a developing media landscape where online
platforms are creating more and more opportunities for creators every year.2
Now more than ever its obvious that the Internet is a boon to creativity. More music, more
video, more text, and more software is being created by more people in more places than ever
before.3 Every kind of creative endeavor, both amateur and professional, is being transformed
by the new opportunities and lower costs made possible by digital tools and online distribution.
Nevertheless, online piracy still remains a challenge, and Google takes that challenge seriously.
We develop and deploy anti-piracy solutions with the support of hundreds of Google employees.
This regular report details those efforts, as well as how Google products and services create
opportunity for creators around the world.

Googles Anti-Piracy Principles


C
 reate More and Better Legitimate Alternatives. The best way to battle piracy is with
better, more convenient, legitimate alternatives to piracy. By developing products
with beautiful user experiences, we help drive revenue for creative industries.
F
 ollow the Money. Rogue sites that specialize in online piracy are commercial
ventures, which means the most effective way to combat them is to cut off their
money supply. Google is a leader in rooting out and ejecting rogue sites from our
advertising and payment services, and in raising standards across the industry.
1 Washington Post, YouTube sensation Lindsey Stirling on how the Internet can shape the music industry,
May 2014 <http://goo.gl/4aZV9I>
2 Google, Testimony of Katherine Oyama, Sr. Copyright Policy Counsel, Google Inc., March 2014 <http://goo.gl/iCLsnp>
3 Techdirt, The Sky is Rising, January 2012 <http://goo.gl/eDN1n>

B
 e Efficient, Effective, and Scalable. Google strives to implement anti-piracy solutions
that work. For example, beginning in 2010, Google has made substantial investments
in streamlining the copyright removal process for search results. As a result, these
improved procedures allow us to process copyright removal requests for search results
at the rate of millions per week with an average turnaround time of less than 6 hours.
G
 uard Against Abuse. Unfortunately, fabricated copyright infringement allegations can be
used as a pretext for censorship and to hinder competition. Google is committed to ensuring
that, even as we battle piracy online, we detect and reject bogus infringement allegations.
P
 rovide Transparency. We disclose the number of requests we receive from copyright owners
and governments to remove information from our services.4 We hope these steps toward
greater transparency will inform ongoing discussions about content regulation online.

These principles guide the actions of Google employees, as well as our investment of tens of
millions of dollars in new tools and systems to improve and expand our anti-piracy efforts.
Some of the highlights, discussed in more detail in this report, include:
YOUTUBE

More than a million partner channels from more than 30 countries are earning money
from their YouTube videos. More than 5,000 rightsholder partners use YouTubes content
identification tool, Content ID, to manage their copyrights appearing within user-generated
content on the site. These partners include network broadcasters, movie studios,
songwriters, and record labels, and they are collectively making hundreds of millions of
dollars a year by using YouTubes Content ID tools to monetize these videos.
GOOGLE PLAY

A digital storefront where people can buy millions of songs and books, thousands of
movies and TV shows, and much more content. And Play offers a subscription service
which gives people another way to access millions of songs across their devices for a
monthly fee. For a monthly fee they can listen to millions of songs across their devices.
GOOGLE SEARCH

We process more takedown notices, and faster, than any other search engine. We receive
notices for a tiny fraction of everything we host and index, which nonetheless amounts
to millions of copyright removal requests per week that are processed, on average, in less
than 6 hours.
ADS

Our policies prohibit infringing sites from using our advertising services. Since 2012, we
have ejected more than 73,000 sites from our AdSense program, the vast majority of those
caught by our own proactive screens.

4 Google, Transparency Report: Removal Requests, January 2013 <http://goo.gl/jrQTj>

Better Legitimate Alternatives to Piracy


Piracy often arises when consumer demand goes unmet by legitimate supply. As services
ranging from Netflix to Spotify to iTunes have demonstrated, the best way to combat piracy
is with better and more convenient legitimate services. The right combination of price,
convenience, and inventory will do far more to reduce piracy than enforcement can.
The music industry has demonstrated the effectiveness of this approach by licensing a
variety of music services including free, advertising-supported streaming services (like
Spotify and Pandora), download stores (like iTunes), and on-demand subscription products
(like Google Play Music All Access). A survey released by the Swedish music industry
showed that since 2009 the number of people who download music illegally in Sweden has
decreased by more than 25 percent, largely as a result of greater availability of improved
legal services such as Spotify.5 Similar trends were seen in a 2013 survey from NPD Group.6
And a recent study conducted by Spotify found that overall piracy rates in the Netherlands
has declined dramatically thanks to the popularity of legitimate digital music services.7 And
at the 2014 Bigsound conference in Brisbane, Spotify shared data showing that torrent
activity in Australia fell by more than 20% following their entry into that market.8
Signs have been positive that the creative industries are growing around the world, thanks
in large part to digitization. IFPI reported that the recording industry grew its digital
revenue by 4.3% in 2013, to $5.9 billion.9 Nielsen reported that, in 2013, the number of
music streams in the U.S. alone grew by a whopping 32%.10 A 2013 study by Booz & Co. in
Europe found that digital media was driving growth in the European creative sector.11
Google has been at the forefront of creating new, authorized ways for consumers to obtain
digital content. We build platforms where our users can legitimately purchase, consume,
and discover entertainment and culture. We also pioneer innovative new approaches to
monetizing online media.
5 Mediavision, Music Sweden File Sharing & Downloading, 2011 <http://goo.gl/XTUVH>
6 NPD Group, Music Filesharing declined Significantly in 2012, Feburary 2012 <http://goo.gl/apJVo>
7 Spotify, New Spotify study sees encouraging downwards trend in music piracy in the Netherlands, July 2013 <http://
goo.gl/ImsYbB>
8 Billboard, Streaming Services Make Inroads Into Piracy Down Under, Spotifys Will Page Tells Bigsound September 2014
<http://goo.gl/UGstju>
9 IFPI, IFPI Digital Music Report: 2014, March 2014 <http://goo.gl/DcPw52>
10 Nielsen, U.S. Music Industry Year-End Review: 2013, January 2014 <http://goo.gl/ukgtU0>
11 Booz & Co., The Digital Future of Creative Europe: The Economic Impact of Digitization and the Internet on the Creative
Sector in Europe, March 2013 <http://goo.gl/35tm0f>

YouTube Partners
YouTubes community includes not only a billion individual users every month, but also
more than a million partner channels from over thirty countries that earn money from
their YouTube videosfrom independent musicians and creators to some of the worlds
biggest record labels, movie studios, and news organizations. YouTube has developed a
series of tools and programs to help our content partners thrive, including partnerships
with every major record label, as well as hundreds of collecting societies, independent
labels, and music publishers to license recorded music on the site. As a result of
partnerships like these, YouTube generates hundreds of millions of dollars each year for
the content industry.
From musicians to athletes, teachers to comedians, more than a million video creators
are now part of the Partner Program established by YouTube in 2007. Many thousands
of them are earning six-figure incomes from their YouTube channels. To further invest in
this creative community, we have opened facilities like the new collaborative spaces in LA,
London, Tokyo, and soon in New York as places for partners to shoot, edit and create their
content for free. These facilities support the creative industry in developing and monetizing
their work through partner channels on YouTube.

Photos of the YouTube Space in Los Angeles. For more information, visit youtube.com/yt/space.

Rentals are another option for content partners. Thanks to our partnerships with content
creators, YouTube offers tens of thousands of movies and TV episodes to rent at standard
industry pricing.

YOU T UB E CR E ATOR C A SE S T UDIE S


One of the most inspiring things about YouTube is the way people around the world use it to
express their passion and creativityand to turn it into a career. Thousands of channels are
now generating six-figure revenue through the YouTube Partner Program, and there are more
than one million channels earning revenue.
Below are just a few recent examples of creators succeeding on YouTube:

Michelle Phan
Michelle Phan was one of the earliest YouTube
adopters to share beauty tutorials. Over the
past seven years, she has uploaded more than
300 videos that have positioned her as a how-to
influencer, with more than 6 million subscribers
and almost 1 billion video views.

VICE
VICE is known for its bold explorations of
uncomfortable truths and going to places they
dont belong, partly due to the controversial
videos on its YouTube channel. Today they have
millions of subscribers.

Epic Rap Battles


Great content is at the heart of any successful
YouTube channel strategy and Epic Rap Battles,
with its unique blend of history, comedy and
music content, nails it. The channel has garnered
more than 1 billion lifetime views and 10 million
total subscribers. Epic Rap Battles rakes in an
average of 37 million views per rap battle video.

Thanks to the popularity of music videos and YouTubes agreements with record labels
and music publishers to feature them, YouTube has become an important destination
for music. So much so that, as of February 2013, Billboard magazines Hot 100 chart now
incorporates YouTube views when ranking a songs popularity. The 2013 Digital Music
Report from IFPI12, an international association representing the recording industry,
concluded that 90% of Internet users are aware of YouTube, and that the service attracts
a large global audience. And YouTube has sent more than a billion dollars to the music
industry in the last few years.
Each time a music fan chooses YouTube over an unauthorized source for music, its a
victory against piracyunlike previous generations of music fans who were raised on
unauthorized sources for music, todays young fans have YouTube as a legal, compelling
way to experience music online. And because of our licensing agreements with our
partners in the music industry, rightsholders are compensated when fans visit YouTube to
experience music videos.

Google Play
There are more than a billion active Android users around the world, presenting a
tremendous opportunity to creative industries. Google Play is a service that helps
rightsholders and creators sell their applications or content directly to Google users,
particularly on Android. Its a digital store where people can find, purchase and enjoy
entertainment for their devicesfrom computers to tablets to smartphones. Weve
partnered with all of the major record labels, publishers, and movie studios to offer
millions of songs and books, thousands of movies and TV shows, and hundreds of
magazines that can be enjoyed across devices. Google Play has expanded rapidly into new
countries in the last year: Play Music is available in 45 countries, Play Movies in more than
93 countries, and Play Books in 57 countries.
MUSIC

Google Play offers users a store where they can purchase new music, a music locker to store
existing collections of songs, and a subscription service to access millions of songs from the
Google Play collection. Today there are millions of songs available for purchase from Google
Play. Google also has scan-and-match licenses that enable users to access their personal
music collections from any connected device, without the time-consuming process of
uploading those files. Our music subscription service lets users listen to millions of songs
on-demand for a monthly fee.
These products are driving revenue for the music industry. And thanks to our partnerships
with rightsholders around the world, Google Play Music is available to a global audience

12 IFPI, IFPI Digital Music Report 2013, 2013 <http://goo.gl/DsZ3p>

MOVIES AND TV SHOWS

Google Play has partnered with all of the major film studios in the U.S. and many local
studios overseas to offer thousands of movies and TV shows for rental or purchase, many
before Netflix and home release. We also offer innovative features that take advantage of
a digital format to drive user engagement, such as Info Cards that appear when a movie or
TV show is paused and give more information about the actors and music in a scene.
BOOKS AND MAGAZINES

Google Play is home to the worlds largest selection of eBooks with more than 5
million titles available. More than 48,000 publishers have joined the Partner Program
to promote their books online, including nearly every major U.S. publisher. We have
also partnered with major publishers to make more than 2,000 news sources available
across newspapers, magazines, blogs and news sites, including the Wall Street Journal,
New York Times, Financial Times, Vanity Fair, NPR, and many more, creating a new market
for magazines and newspapers. Users are able to access their books, magazines, and
newspapers on any of their devices.
APPS AND GAMES

Google Play is an engine of economic opportunity for application developers because it


gives them a free platform to build on and reach millions of users. More than a million apps
and games are available for sale or for free on Google Play, and theyve been downloaded
over 50 billion times.
Several of the most popular apps are delivering licensed music, movies, and TV shows to
users.
Netflix, which launched on Android in 2011, allows subscribers to stream TV and movies.
Pandora creates personalized music stations and streams songs directly to users.
S
 potify is a subscription music services that offers both free, ad-supported
access, as well as subscription access, to a catalog of licensed music.

We also launched Google Play Games, an app that makes it easy to discover new games,
track achievements and scores, and play games with friends around the world. Google
Play is an opportunity for game developers to showcase their creativity and sell their apps
directly to gamers. Google Play Games is the fastest growing mobile game network of all
time. Three out of every four Android users play games.

YouTube

More than one billion unique users visit YouTube each month and together watch more than
six billion hours of video. And more than 100 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every
minute, spanning every conceivable topic from politics to comedy, from daredevil sports to
religion. YouTube has been a transformational force in the world of creative expression, a
global video platform at a scale never imagined.
YouTubes popularity translates into creator success. For example, over the past few years
weve paid out over a billion dollars to the music industry alone, and thousands of partner
channels are now earning more than a hundred thousand dollars a year. As we explain
below, much of this growth is due to the investments weve made in technologies that help
rightsholders and creators find and monetize their content on the platform.

Content ID: A Win-Win Solution


Beginning in 2007, YouTube developed and launched the most advanced content
identification system in the world, called Content ID. With this system, rightsholders
are able to identify user-uploaded videos that are entirely or partially their content, and
choose, in advance, what they want to happen when those videos are found.
This is how it works: Rightsholders deliver YouTube reference files (audio-only or video)
of content they own, metadata describing that content, and policies describing what they
want YouTube to do when it finds a match. YouTube compares videos uploaded to the
site against those reference files. Our technology automatically identifies the content and
applies the rightsholders preferred policy.
Rightsholders can choose between three policies when an upload matches their content:
1) make money from it; 2) leave it up and track viewing statistics; or 3) block it from
YouTube altogether.

Thanks to the options that Content ID gives to copyright owners, its not just an anti-piracy
solution, but also a new business model for copyright owners and YouTube alike. The
majority of partners using Content ID choose to monetize their claims and many have seen
significant increases in revenue as a result. Content ID has generated more than a billion
dollars for the content industry.
Content ID is good for users as well. When copyright owners choose to monetize or track
user-submitted videos, it allows users to continue to freely remix and upload a wide variety
of new creations using existing works.

CON T EN T ID S TAT S
More than

5,000 partners
use Content ID, including major U.S. network broadcasters, movie studios
and record labels.

Content ID scans over

More than

of video every day.

have been claimed with the help of Content ID.

400 years

300 million videos

We have more than

25 million active reference files


In the Content ID database; thats over 1.5 million hours of material.

10

YouTube Copyright Policies


The vast majority of the 100 hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute do not
infringe anyones copyright. Nevertheless, YouTube takes seriously its role in educating
YouTube users about copyright and creating strong incentives to discourage infringing
activity. As a result, YouTube has a number of policies in place designed to discourage
copyright infringement and terminate repeat offenders. For example:
When YouTube removes a video in
response to a valid copyright removal
notice, we notify the user and apply a
strike to the account of the user who
uploaded the video

Upon receipt of one strike, the user account loses


a number of account privileges, including the ability
to upload videos longer than 15 minutes and use our
Hangouts on Air live-streaming platform
By completing an online
Copyright School program
and receiving no further
strikes during a six-month
period, the user can both
become educated about
copyright and have one
strike removed

Upon receipt of three strikes, the users account will be suspended and all the videos
uploaded to the account will be removed

11

The YouTube Copyright Center


In addition to the Content ID system, copyright owners and their representatives can
submit copyright removal notices through the YouTube Copyright Center, which offers
an easy-to-use web form, as well as extensive information aimed at educating YouTube
users about copyright. The Copyright Center also offers YouTube users a web form for
counter-noticing copyright infringement notices that they believe are misguided or abusive.

Glove and Boots explains copyright in the YouTube Copyright Center: youtube.com/yt/copyright/.

YouTube Content Verification Program


YouTube offers a Content Verification Program for rightsholders who have a regular need
to submit high volumes of copyright removal notices and have demonstrated high accuracy
in their prior submissions. This program makes it easier for rightsholders to search
YouTube for material that they believe to be infringing, quickly identify infringing videos,
and provide YouTube with information sufficient to permit us to locate and remove that
material, all in a streamlined manner that makes the process more efficient.

12

Google Web Search


There are more than 60 trillion addresses on the web. Only an infinitesimal portion of
those trillions infringe copyright, and those infringing pages cannot be identified by Google
without the cooperation of rightsholders. Nearly every paragraph of text, photograph,
video, sound recording, or piece of software is potentially protected by copyright law.
Moreover, copyright laws generally permit some uses, such as parodies and quotation,
even over a copyright owners objection. So while we dont want to include links to
infringing pages in our search results, Google needs the cooperation of copyright owners
to separate the authorized or unobjectionable uses from infringing ones.
Google relies on copyright owners to notify us when they discover that a search result
infringes their rights and should be removed. These notices are submitted through
procedures that are consistent with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and
similar laws that apply to providers of online services.13
To help copyright owners submit these notices, Google has developed a streamlined
submission process. There is no search engine that processes as many copyright removal
notices as Google does, and none that process them more quickly. For example:
In 2013 we received just over 224 million DMCA requests for Google Search results.
W
 e ultimately removed 222M, which means we rejected or reinstated less than
1% after review because we either needed additional information, were unable
to find the page, or concluded that the material was not infringing; and
Our average turnaround time for copyright notices remains less than 6 hours.

In addition, Google incorporates the number of valid copyright removal notices we receive
for any given site as a signal in our ranking algorithm, as described below.

13 The DMCA is a U.S. law that provides qualifying online service providers like Google with a safe harbor from monetary liability
for copyright infringement claims. One of the requirements of these safe harbor provisions is that the service provider
(Google, in this case) remove or disable access to allegedly infringing material upon receiving a request that meets certain
requirements. Laws governing other jurisdictions, such as Europes E-Commerce Directive, have similar requirements for
service providers.

13

Submitting Removal Notices


The fastest and most efficient way to submit a copyright removal notice to Google is
through our content removal web form, which accepts many different kinds of removals
requests, including copyright requests. The information we request in our web form is
consistent with the DMCA and similar laws, and provides a simple and efficient mechanism
for copyright owners from countries around the world. Since 2012, more than 35,000
different entities have submitted requests to remove URLs from search results for
copyright violations.
In addition to the public content removal web
form for copyright owners who have a proven
track record of submitting accurate notices
and who have a consistent need to submit
thousands of URLs each day, Google created
the Trusted Copyright Removal Program for Web
Search (TCRP). This program streamlines the
submission process, allowing copyright owners
or their enforcement agents to submit large
volumes of URLs on a consistent basis. There are
now more than 80 TCRP partners, who together
submit the vast majority of notices every year.

There are now more than 80


TCRP partners, who together
submit the vast majority of
notices every year.

14

R EMOVA L R EQUE S T S F OR SE A RCH SK Y ROCK E T


Since launching new submission tools for copyright owners and their agents in 2011, we have
seen remarkable growth in the number of pages that copyright owners have asked us to
remove from search results. In fact, today we receive removal requests for more URLs every
week than we did in the twelve years from 1998 to 2010 combined. At the same time, Google is
processing the notices we receive for Search faster than ever beforecurrently, on average, in
less than six hours.
Google has a strong track record of developing solutions that scale efficiently. The trend line is
strikingfrom more than three million pages for all of 2011 to millions of pages per week today.
As the numbers continue to swell, it becomes both more difficult and more important to detect
and pick out the abusive and erroneous removal notices.
Google has never charged copyright owners for providing these services, and we will continue
to invest substantial resources and engineering effort into improving our procedures for
receiving and processing copyright removal notices.

Top 10 Reporting Organizations in 2013


10M

British Recorded Music Industry Ltd

20M

30M

43.3M

Degban

40.9M

RIAA , Inc.

31.6M

MarkMonitor AntiPiracy

15.8M

Fox Group Legal

15.1M

Takedown Piracy LLC

10.2M

Remove Your Media LLC


Unidam, Inc.
DMCA Force
NBCUniversal

40M

7.7M
5.5M
4.8M
3.9M

Top 10 Copyright Owners in 2013


10M

BPI Ltd. Member Companies

20M

31.6M

Froytal Services Ltd

18.5M

Fox

15.4M

Microsoft

9.8M

RK NetMedia Inc.
XFC Inc.
DMM.com Labo, Ltd.
NBCUniversal

40M
43.3M

RIAA member companies

Hydentra L.P

30M

8.2M
5M
4.4M
4M
3.9M

15

Transparency
When we remove material from search results, we believe users and the public should
be able to see who made the removal request and why. Because copyright infringement
allegations are the basis for the vast majority of the legal requests that we receive
to remove items from search results, we have taken the following steps to ensure
transparency:
M
 aintaining the Google Transparency Report. In 2012, we added details regarding
copyright removal notices to our Transparency Report site.14 Updated daily, the site
shows the aggregate number of URLs that we have been asked to remove, as well as who
submitted the notices, on behalf of which copyright owners, and for which websites.
N
 otifying webmasters of removals. If a website operator uses Googles
Webmaster Tools, notification will be provided to webmasters there when
a web page in their domain has received a takedown notice.15
I nforming users when results have been removed from their search results.
When users perform a search where results have been removed due to
a copyright complaint, Google displays the following notice:

In response to a complaint we received under the US Digital


Millennium Copyright Act, we have removed 1 result(s) from
this page. If you wish, you may read the DMCA complaint
that caused the removal(s) at ChillingEffects.org.
P
 roviding copies of notices to Chilling Effects. Since 2002, Google has provided a copy
of each copyright removal notice that we receive for search results to the nonprofit
organization Chilling Effects. By gathering together copyright removal notices
from a number of sources, including Google and Twitter, Chilling Effects fosters
research and examination of removal notices submitted by copyright owners.16

Detecting and Preventing Abuse


Google works hard to detect and prevent abuses of the copyright removal process. From
time to time, we may receive inaccurate or unjustified copyright removal requests for
search results that clearly do not link to infringing content.

14 Google, Transparency Report: Removal Requests, January 2013 < http://goo.gl/jrQTj>


15 Google, Webmaster Tools 2013 <http://goo.gl/JxSTF>
16 Chilling Effects, Legal Scholarship Using Chilling Effects, December 2010 <http://goo.gl/Xez14>

16

E X A MPLE S OF DMC A A BUSE


Here are a few examples of requests that have been submitted through our copyright removals
process that were clearly invalid copyright removal requests. In each case, we did not remove
the URL in question from search results:
A major U.S. motion picture studio requested removal of the Internet Movie Database (IMDb)
page for a movie released by its own studio, as well as the official trailer posted on a major
authorized online media service.
A U.S. reporting organization working on behalf of a major movie studio twice requested
removal of a movie review on a major newspaper website.
A driving school in the U.K. requested the removal of a competitors homepage from Google
Search, on the grounds that the competitor had copied an alphabetized list of cities and
regions where instruction was offered.
A content protection organization acting on behalf of motion picture, record, and sports
programming companies requested the removal of search results that linked only to copyright
removal requests on Chilling Effects that had originally been submitted by one of its clients.
An individual in the U.S. requested the removal of search results that link to court proceedings
referencing her first and last name on the ground that her name was copyrightable.
Multiple individuals in the U.S. requested the removal of search results linking to blog posts
and web forums that associated their names with certain allegations, locations, dates, or
negative comments.
A company in the U.S. requested the removal of search results that link to an employees blog
posts about unjust and unfair treatment.

In 2012, we terminated two partners from the Trusted Copyright Removal Program for Web
Search for repeatedly sending inaccurate notices through our high-volume submission
mechanisms. Because the TCRP is reserved for partners with a track record of submitting
accurate notices, access to the program can be revoked where a partner falls short of
these high standards.
As the volume of removal notices continues to rise, detecting inaccurate or abusive notices
continues to pose a challenge. Google invests continuously in engineering and other
solutions to address this. The Transparency Report has also proven useful in detecting
abusive notices, as journalists, webmasters, and other interested members of the public
have examined the data made available there.
Webmasters may also submit a counter-notice if they determine that a page on their site
has been removed from Google Search results due to an erroneous copyright removal
notice. Google affords webmasters two ways to be notified if any pages on their sites are
targeted by removal notices. First, if the site operator uses Googles Webmaster Tools,
notification will be provided to webmasters there. Second, the Transparency Report shows
copyright removal notices received for a domain.

17

Using Copyright Removal Notices in Ranking


In addition to removing pages from search results when notified by copyright owners,
Google also factors in the number of valid copyright removal notices we receive for any
given site as one signal among the hundreds that we take into account when ranking
search results. Consequently, sites with high numbers of removal notices may appear
lower in search results. This ranking change helps users find legitimate, quality sources of
content more easily.
While we use the number of valid copyright
removal notices as a signal for ranking purposes,
we do not remove pages from results unless
we receive a specific removal request for the
page. Even for the websites that have received
the highest numbers of notices, the number of
noticed pages is typically only a tiny fraction of
the total number of pages on the site. It would be
inappropriate to remove entire sites under
these circumstances.

Sites with high numbers of


removal notices may appear
lower in search results.

In October 2014, we have improved and refined the DMCA demotion signal in search
results, increasing the effectiveness of just one tool rightsholders have at their disposal.
As outlined earlier in this report, rightsholders made good use of our removals process
to target sites sites that they have not authorized to distribute content and have sent us
hundreds of millions of removal requests over the last year.

18

SE A RCH A ND PIR AC Y: T HE R E A LI T Y
In reflecting on the role search engines can play in addressing the problem of piracy,
commentators often overlook some important realities:

1. Search is not a major driver of traffic to pirate sites.


Google Search is not how music, movie, and TV fans intent on pirating media find pirate sites.
All traffic from major search engines (Yahoo, Bing, and Google combined) accounts for less
than 16% of traffic to sites like The Pirate Bay.17 In fact, several notorious sites have said publicly
that they dont need search engines, as their users find them through social networks, word
of mouth, and other mechanisms.18 Research that Google co-sponsored with PRS for Music
in the UK further confirmed that traffic from search engines is not what keeps these sites
in business.19 These findings were confirmed in a recent research paper published by the
Computer & Communications Industry Association.20

2. Search cant eradicate pirate sites.


Search engines do not control what content is on the Web. There are more than 60 trillion web
addresses on the Internet, and there will always be new sites dedicated to making copyrighted
works available, as long as there is money to be made doing so. According to recent research,
replicating these sites is easy and inexpensive, and attempts to make them disappear should
focus on eradicating the business model that supports them.21

3. Volume of allegedly piracy-related queries is dwarfed by broader queries.


When it comes to building anti-piracy measures, we prioritize efforts where they can make the
most difference. Google Search receives more than three billion queries each day. We want to
focus our efforts where the users are.
The good news is that the most popular queries relating to movies, music, books, video games,
and other copyrighted works return results that do not include links to infringing materials. This
is thanks to both our constant improvements to the algorithms that power Google Search, and
the efforts of rightsholders to prioritize and target their copyright removal notices.
So when some critics focus on infringing materials appearing in search results for particular
queries, it is important to consider how many users actually make those queries. During the
first six months of 2013, Google users searched for22:

carly rae jepsen call me maybe


16 TIMES MORE OFTEN THAN
carly rae jepsen call me maybe mp3

flo rida whistle


30 TIMES MORE OFTEN THAN
flo rida whistle download

game of thrones
200 TIMES MORE OFTEN THAN
game of thrones download

django unchained
1,000 TIMES MORE OFTEN THAN
django unchained free download

30 rock
5,000 TIMES MORE OFTEN THAN
30 rock free stream

katy perry
200,000 TIMES MORE OFTEN THAN
free katy perry mp3

17 Study on file with author, NERA Economic Consulting. A secondary analysis published by TechDirt, http://goo.gl/XESoa
18 TorrentFreak, Pirate Bay and isoHunt Respond to Google Search Result Punishment, August 2012 <http://goo.gl/DUQ0F>
19 BAE Systems Detica, The Six Business Models for Copyright Infringement, June 2012 <http://goo.gl/tylZd>
20 CCIA, The Search Fixation: Infringement, Search Results, and Online Content, 2013 <http://goo.gl/zIM5LF>
21 Northeastern University, Clickonomics: Determining the Effect of Anti-Piracy Measures for One-Click Hosting, 2013 <http://
goo.gl/Y3wST>
22 These queries were raised by RIAA and MovieLabs in discussions with Google.

19

Removing Terms Associated with Piracy from


Autocomplete and Related Search
Autocomplete is a convenience feature in Google Search that attempts to complete a
query as its typed based on similar queries that other users have typed. Related Search
shows queries that other users have typed that may be similar to yours. Google has taken
steps to prevent terms closely associated with piracy from appearing in Autocomplete and
Related Search.

Making Legitimate Alternatives More Visible


In addition to removing infringing pages from search results and using valid removal
notices as a ranking signal, Google has a number of new advertising products which
further promote authorized sources of content in Search results.
A
 ds in the right-hand panel. Searches for movies, musicians,
albums, etc. on Google will often return a panel on the righthand side of the search results. These provide users with
facts, images and quick answers to their queries. Within
these panels, weve been testing new ways for advertisers
to quickly enable users to watch or listen to content online.
For example, a query for the artist Lorde on a desktop
will display a panel for the band on the right-hand side
of the page. Within that panel we may show Listen now
links from advertisers like Spotify or Beats Music.

Ads on long tail consumption-focused queries. When users
search with the intention to consume media, we may show new
ad formats on those queries directing users to legitimate
sources. For example, the query expendables download
returns an ad format at the top of the page advertising Google
Play, Vudu, and Amazon. 23 The same ad format triggers on queries for queries like expendables
torrent. While relatively few users search in this way compared to root queries like
expendables, we are happy that these new ad formats are driving traffic to legitimate sources
of media.

23 At the time of publication.

20

There is more that authorized music, TV, and movie sites can do to help their sites be
more effectively indexed by search engines. The film and television industry has launched
wheretowatch.org, and the music industry has launched whymusicmatters.com to help
consumers find legitimate channels for buying films, TV shows, and songs. And the Music
Business Association has recently offered advice to online music retailers on optimizing
their sites for better performance in search engine results.24 But these industries could do
even more to build album-, movie- and TV show-specific pages that could then surface in
search engine results.
Indexing subscription music and video services is also a challenge for search engines. It is
difficult for a search engine to return results from licensed services like Spotify or Netflix
if it doesnt know what songs and programs are available from those services. With more
information, search engines could return better, more relevant legitimate results to users
seeking the content. Google looks forward to continuing collaborative efforts with content
owners and authorized services, intended to make the offerings of authorized services
more visible in search results.

24 Music Business Association, INFOGRAPHIC: Search Engine Optimization for Music Websites, May 2014 <http://goo.gl/AYaL1t>

21

Were

O
P
E
N

SALE

Advertising
Following the Money
The most effective way to combat rogue sites that specialize in online piracy is to cut off
their money supply. These sites are almost exclusively for-profit enterprises, and so long as
there is money to be made by their operators, other anti-piracy strategies will be far less
effective. As a global leader in online advertising, Google is committed to rooting out and
ejecting rogue sites from our advertising services. We are also working with other leaders
in the industry to craft best practices aimed at raising standards across the entire online
advertising industry.

Best Practices
In April 2011, Google was among the first companies to certify compliance in the
Interactive Advertising Bureaus (IABs) Quality Assurance Certification program, through
which participating advertising companies will take steps to enhance buyer control over
the placement and context of advertising and build brand safety.25 This program will
help ensure that advertisers and their agents are able to control where their ads appear
across the web.
In July 2013, Google worked with the White Houses Office of the U.S. Intellectual Property
Enforcement Coordinator (IPEC) and other leading ad networks to participate in Best
Practices and Guidelines for Ad Networks to Address Piracy and Counterfeiting.26 Under
these best practices, ad networks will maintain and post policies prohibiting websites
that are principally dedicated to engaging in copyright piracy from participating in the
ad networks advertising programs. By working across the industry, these best practices
should help reduce the financial incentives for pirate sites by cutting off their revenue
supply while maintaining a healthy Internet and promoting innovation.

25 IAB, Quality Assurance Guidelines, November 2011 <http://goo.gl/BfOny>


26 The White House, Coming Together to Combat Online Piracy and Counterfeiting, July 2013 <http://goo.gl/86x1QE>

22

AdSense
More than two million web publishers use AdSense to make money from their content
on the web, making it the chief Google advertising product used by online publishers.
The overwhelming majority of those publishers are not engaged in any kind of copyright
infringement. AdSense has always prohibited publishers from using AdSense to place
ads on pages that contain pirated content, and Google proactively monitors the AdSense
network to root out bad publishers.
Since 2012, we have ejected more than 73,000 sites from our AdSense program, the vast
majority of those caught by our own proactive screens. Almost all AdSense ad formats
include a link that permits a copyright owner to report sites that are violating Googles
policies. Copyright owners may also notify us of violations through a web form.

Each time we receive a valid copyright removal notice for Search, we also blacklist that page
from receiving any AdSense advertising in the future.
Google does not want to be in business with rogue sites specializing in piracy. Thanks to
our ongoing efforts, we are succeeding in detecting and ejecting these sites from AdSense.
While a rogue site might occasionally slip through the cracks, the data suggests that
these sites are a vanishingly small part of the AdSense network. For example, we find that
AdSense ads appear on far fewer than 1% of the pages that copyright owners identify in
copyright removal notices for Search.

23

DoubleClick
DoubleClick offers a suite of online advertising platform solutions for both advertisers and
web publishers. The principal customers for DoubleClick services are large advertisers,
ad agencies, large publishers, and ad networks. It is virtually unheard of for these sorts of
commercial entities to be operating rogue sites specializing in copyright infringement.
DoubleClick also offers a free service to smaller web publishers on a self-service basis
through the DoubleClick for Publishers (DFP) Small Business program. Although the
program has policies in place to prohibit its use in connection with infringing activity, rogue
publishers have tried to sneak in through this door. Publishers do not pay Google to use
this platform, nor does Google pay them for using it. Nevertheless, Google has revised its
policies and stepped up enforcement efforts for DoubleClick for Publishers Small Business
in an effort to deny rogue sites access to the service as a platform for serving ads sourced
from other networks. AdWords
AdWords is Googles premier advertising product, responsible for the advertisements that
appear next to Google search results, as well as the text advertisements on sites across
the web. Advertisers pay Google for these placements, generally on a cost-per-impression
or cost-per-click basis.
Rogue sites specializing in online piracy generally do not use AdWords. Google receives
very few complaints regarding AdWords being used by rogue pirate sites. Nevertheless, we
maintain strict policies forbidding the use of AdWords to promote copyright infringement.
We take a variety of proactive and reactive steps, through both manual and automated
review, to enforce our policies.

B LO GGER
Blogger is Googles free blog publishing platform, which enables users to create and update
blogs. We remain vigilant against use of the Blogger platform by pirates looking to set up a
free website. Consistent with other Google products that host user-uploaded content, we will
remove infringing blog posts when properly notified by a copyright owner, and will terminate
the entire blog where multiple complaints establish it as a repeat infringer.
We have also created an automated bulk submission tool for copyright owners who have a
track record of reliable submissions and a regular need to submit large volumes of takedown
notices. This tool allows qualified copyright owners to obtain rapid removals of infringing posts
appearing on Blogger.

24

GOOGLES ANTI-PIRACY PRINCIPLES


Create More and Better Legitimate Alternatives. The best way to battle piracy is
with better, more convenient, legitimate alternatives to piracy. By developing licensed
products with beautiful user experiences, we help drive revenue for creative industries.
Follow the Money. Rogue sites that specialize in online piracy are commercial ventures,
which means the most effective way to combat them is to cut off their money supply.
Google is a leader in rooting out and ejecting rogue sites from our advertising and
payment services, and are raising standards across the industry.
Be Efficient, Effective, and Scalable. Google strives to implement anti-piracy solutions
that work. For example, beginning in 2010, Google has made substantial investments in
streamlining the copyright removal process for search results. As a result these improved
procedures allow us to process copyright removal requests for search results at the rate
of four million requests per week with an average turnaround time of less than six hours.
Guard Against Abuse. Unfortunately, fabricated copyright infringement allegations can
be used as a pretext for censorship and to hinder competition. Google is committed to
ensuring that, even as we battle piracy online, we detect and reject bogus infringement
allegations, such as removals for political or competitive reasons.
Provide Transparency. We disclose the number of requests we receive from copyright
owners and governments to remove information from our services. We hope these
steps toward greater transparency will inform ongoing discussions about content
regulation online.

ATTACHMENT B

HOW GOOGLE FIGHTS THE ADVERTISEMENT


OF COUNTERFEIT GOODS
Thanks to the Internet, its never been easier to start a business and reach a huge audience. E-commerce services like
eBay, Amazon, and PriceMinister, advertising platforms like Googles AdWords, and other online services help
companies large and small operate at an incredible scale, and empower consumers with more choices in the market.
Over 1 million advertisers across 190 countries use AdWords the majority of which are SMBs. In the U.S. last year
1
alone, the ads-supported Internet contributed hundreds of billions of dollars to the economy and millions of jobs.

Unfortunately, a small percentage of bad actors misuse legitimate online services to try to sell counterfeit goods. For
our part, we received legitimate complaints from a small fraction of one percent of advertisers in the last year.
Counterfeiting isnt a new problem, of course; just as with any new technology, the Internet creates new
complexities, and many stakeholders have a role to play in resolving this issue. Its critical for brand owners and law
enforcement to tackle counterfeiting at its source. Online services and other stakeholders can help, too.
Although, its important to remember that online services are in no position to determine the authenticity of the
millions of advertised goods, as they never even take possession of them, and fraudsters are always coming up with
more sophisticated ways to game the system.

GOOGLE WORKS HARD TO STOP MISUSE, AND, EVEN AS USE OF OUR ADVERTISING PLATFORM
GROWS, WERE CONTINUOUSLY IMPROVING.
Over

the last three years, we shut down over 100,000 AdWords accounts for attempting to advertise
counterfeit goods.
Google has zero tolerance for counterfeit goods on AdWords and if it finds an advertiser is promoting
counterfeit in nearly all instances it terminates the advertiser from AdWords.
We devote significant engineering and machine resources in order to prevent abuse that violates our
ads policies, including counterfeiting. Over 99% of AdWords accounts terminated on counterfeit
grounds are detected by these systems. In the last year, we invested over $60 million in these
resources.
We provide a way for brand owners to notify us through a reporting form, and we respond to reliable
AdWords counterfeit complaints within 24 hours.
Our relentless crackdown on counterfeit goods is producing powerful results. We banned 7,000
advertisers for promoting counterfeit goods, down from 14,000 in 2013 (and 82,000 in 2012),
demonstrating that counterfeiters are increasingly unable to circumvent our advanced enforcement
systems.
Counterfeiting is a problem that stretches across industries and beyond the Internet, so weve also
assisted both law enforcement and cross-industry anti-counterfeiting efforts.

CLEAR POLICIES & ENFORCEMENT


We have
clear policies against using AdWords
to promote counterfeit goods. When abuse is brought to our attention,
we act expeditiously on it, and we terminate accounts in appropriate circumstances. User education is also key, which
is why weve created a Shopping Safety Tips
page
.
Sources:
1. IAB, Economic Value of the Advertising-Supported Internet Ecosystem, September 2012
<
http://www.iab.net/economicvalue
>

AUTOMATED ABUSE DETECTION


Ads that violate our policies can be tough to detect, as bad guys come up with new ways to cloak their behavior all
the time. To combat this, we look at thousands of data signals to automatically analyze every AdWords ad and
account, and determine whether its likely to violate our policies. Our systems are designed to examine a number of
factors, including ad text and keywords and account characteristics (e.g., we might see if the current location
matches the billing address).
Depending on this examination, the ad and account will be subject to further manual review, or blocked entirely. No
system is perfect, but were constantly working to develop our advanced risk modeling systems in order to address
new threats. The system is designed to learn from past instances of fraud and abuse the more data the system
has about past activity, the better it is about predicting abuse in the future.

COUNTERFEIT REPORTING TOOLS


The cooperation of brand owners is absolutely essential to our efforts. Even though our tools are state of the art,
its not always easy to spot a fraudster selling fakes. As AdWords is just a conduit between advertisers and
consumers, we never take possession of advertised goods, and we cant know whether any particular item out of the
millions advertised is or isnt authentic.
Thats why we also rely on businesses to report feedback on advertisements themselves. If a counterfeit version of a
good is being advertised via AdWords, a brand owner can notify us through a simple form
here
, and any users can
report sites that violate our policies
here
.

COUNTERFEIT GOODS COMPLAINT WEBFORM

COUNTERFEIT GOODS COMPLAINT WEBFORM

LAW ENFORCEMENT
To address illegal activity at its source, we support the enforcement of laws against counterfeiting and respond to
appropriate legal process received from enforcement entities. Google regularly reports misconduct to a wide array
of law enforcement authorities, including working with officials to combat counterfeiting. Googles Trust & Safety
team also has trained hundreds of law enforcement officials on evolving investigative techniques on the web and
emerging trends that Google is seeing, all of which aid in law enforcement effort. We also encourage users to
report illegal activity to the appropriate authorities or local reporting center such as the Internet Crime Complaint
Center (
www.ic3.gov
) or the Intellectual Property Rights Center (
www.ice.gov/iprcenter
).

COLLABORATING WITH INDUSTRY


Counterfeiting is an industry-wide issue, and we work with and support a number of industry groups that work
together on enforcement strategy, knowledge sharing, training and networking, including the International
AntiCounterfeiting Coalition and the International Trademark Association. Working with the White Houses Office of
the U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), and other leading ad
networks, we participated in a set of voluntary Best Practices and Guidelines for Ad Networks to Address Piracy and
Counterfeiting.

TAKING ON COUNTERFEITS BEYOND ADS


Along with our significant investment in preventing the advertisement of counterfeits, we take this issue seriously
across our products and have clear policies in place. Our enforcement practices include:
Responding to valid complaints regarding bad actors attempting to directly make money from counterfeit
goods using AdSense as well as commerce platforms like Shopping, Trusted Stores, and Wallet.
Responding to valid complaints about the sale or promotion of counterfeit goods through content that users
host with us, including on Blogger, Google+, Sites, and YouTube.
Removing sites from Web Search based on valid court orders. Where a complainant has a court order
adjudicating content on a particular page is unlawful, they can submit that through a simple form, and it is
our policy to then remove that page.