Searching for file-sharing information or torrents via Google is going to take a little bit more effort now, thanks to new steps taken by the search engine to remove all sorts of references to torrents from its instant search and autocomplete features.
In December, Google said it was taking steps towards “making copyright work better online.” Among other things, it promised that “terms that are closely associated with piracy” would no longer appear in autocompletes.
Although it may be seen as a struggle to crack down on illegal file sharing, the move is a troubling one, particularly for those who provide BitTorrent services. No wonder, these companies are quick to point out that there are many legitimate uses for torrents.
Part of the problem with this new application, as TorrentFreak noted when it broke the story, the list of banned terms is “seemingly arbitrary.” No version of the word “torrent” will work for instant search – neither the software “uTorrent,” nor “BitTorrent,” the name of a protocol and a San Francisco-based company. But while the cyberlockers RapidShare and Megaupload are now forbidden, other sites like HotFile and MediaFire are not. Furthermore, you can still find the names of other popular torrent sites, including The Pirate Bay.
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