Google's semi-annual transparency report: government takedown requests for 2010


Google's semi-annual Transparency Report features detailed analysis and statistics for government takedown requests, broken down by nation. From this, I learned that Brazil's government sends more Google takedowns than anywhere else, thanks to the combination of a national election and the popularity of Orkut, Google's social networking service.

India's government generates the largest number of bogus takedowns. 88 percent of Indian government takedown requests to Google are denied: "We received requests from different law enforcement agencies to remove a blog and YouTube videos that were critical of Chief Ministers and senior officials of different states. We did not comply with these requests."

Meanwhile, the UK leads the world in the volume of materials taken down: 93,518 removals in 2010, "The UK's Office of Fair Trading requested the removal of fraudulent ads that linked to scams. We complied with the request and removed 93,360 items in total."

Government Requests - Google Transparency Report (via Ars Technica)

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  1. Props to Google for releasing this data.

    I suspect that takedown requests from government agencies represent a small fraction of their total takedown requests, especially on youtube (copyright infringement claims are unlikely to come from a govt agency).

    It would be interesting to see similar data about non-governmental takedown requests.

  2. Feck yeah, not one from the Swedish government! (atleast a little something to be grateful over) This is a great report but like Nosehat said: It would be interesting to see similar data about non-governmental takedown requests.

    1. Grateful? I’m in the UK and actually quite appreciate that my government is concerned about scams.

      Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for a free and open internet, but when it comes to censorship I think I can go along with that one – it’s a request after all, and it can be denied.

  3. I can’t argue with the UK Gov’t asking to take down fraudulent AdWords items. But what’s with the six court cases in the US responsible for over 1,100 items being removed for defamation? Their wording as an explanation sounds like all six were for the same family.

  4. “88 percent of Indian government takedown requests to Google are denied”. Should this be 78 percent? According to the report, 22 percent of requests were either wholly or partially complied with, which leaves 78 percent not complied with.

    Or maybe I’m missing a stat elsewhere in the report.

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