Research Suggests Search Engines Wrongly Accused for Piracy Prevalence
Experts say even with total lock-down, sites would thrive
The study is now challenging the long-held perception that search engines from large to small are actively looking to promote unlicensed content that is being shared across the web. The visibility of such content can be said to be directly related to the capability of the website programmers at utilizing SEO logistics and analytics.
According to the paper, the idea of being able to eliminate unlawful websites from search engines results directly from active attempts is highly “flawed”. The infringing websites in question actually receive little traffic via the search engines, according to the results.
According to the paper's research, even if all capability to search for such sites was removed, sites like Isohunt would still survive. In their own words, even if all engines were to remove the capability to search for such sites, the pirating sites would “survive even a complete search engine ban”.
Matt Schruers, who authored the paper, stated: “Many music sites now demonstrate an acute awareness of the importance of a strong digital presence, and generally demonstrate effective organic and paid search optimisation.”
Schruers continued, saying: “Searches for such terms as ‘music downloads’ indicate that lawful platforms such as Spotify, Last.fm, and Radio aggressively seek to optimise their organic (i.e. ‘natural’) search results as well as paid search advertising for such terms, including terms that might otherwise lead to unlicensed sites.”
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