By now most of us know that the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) takedown service has been abused by companies and business interests. In the past we’ve seen companies try to get the Pirate Bay homepage delisted from Google for no valid reason, something Google rejected, we’ve seen Microsoft send Google a DMCA takedown request for removing its own links and we’ve seen GoPro use a DMCA take down on DigitalRev to remove an unfavourable review from their site. These are but a handful of examples that show the DMCA takedown procedure is often abused, misused or simply misunderstood.
The latest example comes from TorrentFreak who report that movie company Magnolia Pictures submitted a DMCA takedown notice to Google. The request asked Google to remove IMDB links, Rotten Tomatoes links and official trailer links, to several of its own movies, from Google’s search engine. Yes you heard that right Magnolia Pictures want IMDB, Rotten Tomatoes and Official trailer links, to their own movies removed from Google. The movies in question were “I Give It a Year”, “Mr Nobody”, “Évocateur: The Morton Downey Jr. Movie” and “Prince Avalanche”.
Of course Google was not stupid enough to process their requests and Google rejected them all on the basis of them being invalid. What this latest incident shows is that DMCA takedowns are a complete and utter joke and are being consistently abused and misused to the point where companies are so over-zealous they now attack their own products on legitimate sites. It also shows that Google are expected to be the copyright police of the internet as companies just dump a bucket-load of DMCA takedown notices on Google and expect them to determine which ones are valid requests and which ones are not.
Come on Hollywood. It’s time to grow up.
Image courtesy of Google