Google’s latest effort to penalise copyright infringing websites has seen some sites drop 98% on its search engine, according to new data from Searchmetrics.
The Pirate Update is a search filter designed to penalise sites that violate copyright legislation – any sites on which Google finds a violation are likely to receive a huge drop in search rankings or be completely removed from search engine result pages. The Pirate Update was first rolled out in 2012 and was updated last week.
According to the analysis of Google’s US search results by Searchmetrics almost all sites thought to have been hit by the latest Pirate Update have seen an enormous drop to their appearance in search results – some sites have experienced as much as a 98% loss of visibility.
Many of the sites impacted by Google Pirate display links and/or content related to movies, TV and music. Sites such as movie4k.to which lost 98% in SEO Visibility have typically ranked for search keywords such as “download free movies”, “watch [movie name] online free”, “online free movies”, “movies download”, “watch [movie name]”, “where can I watch [movie name] online” etc.
The move follows complaints from producers that Google has shied away from actively policing against piracy.
Read the full Searchmetrics blog here