Censorship demands to Google revealed, U.S. requests double

Google listings, blogs, and YouTube videos are targets for censorship around the world. But why did U.S. takedown commands double in the last six months of 2011?

The Transparency Report from Google lists all the raw data from governments, but highlights many specific instances and trends. Terrorist videos get taken down, as do search listings about child pornography. Locations matter: criticizing the monarchy is illegal in Thailand, so 149 videos were cut. So far, insulting government leaders remains fair game in the U.S.

Spain, for example, asked that 270 blogs and links be taken down because they criticized public figures, but Google refused. American agencies asked Google to block 6,192 items in the second half of 2011 compared to only 757 items in the first half of the year. Unfortunately, the trend for democracies to try to block political speech is increasing.

Warning! Warning!

I would hope we all find this disturbing.

Kerry Gates Nunn on techcrunch.com

People don't have to do anything on the net, they chooooose to do it. These take downs are nefarious and a stain on the internet.

Raid3r on tomgsuide.com

The simple fact is that the government isn't censoring enough.

dantebbe on cnet.com

Well, we can't have people seeing things on the web that might cause them to start thinking and forming opinions that the govt. can't control.

GlennAllen on cnet.com

Good for Google

I noticed a few locations such as the USA where Google did not honor a court order - this in many countries is an offense whereby people can go to jail.

Ryan Portsmouth on techcrunch.com

In Brazil there's a Commission in Senate against child exploitation and they do block access to certain sites/networks. Guess removing them from the search engine is part of the job.

K2N hater on tomgsuide.com

Explain yourselves, U.S. requesters

While I care what other governments ask Google to censor, I'm more concerned with what the US government asked it to censor.

rrhude on cnet.com

Not surprised. They don't want us to know whats really going on.

raven2510 on tomgsuide.com

national security - any country that keeps secrets in my mind, is doing things wrong or is trying to hide a problem

Yelonde on cnet.com

Vote with your comments: what, if anything, should governments have the right to block?

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