Monday February 20, 2017

How a Site with Virtually No Traffic Received 49.5M Takedown Notices

Raise your hand. Who here thinks rightsholder groups submit individual thoughtful complaints to Google of actual infringing links for them to remove? Well, here's another one to fuel your suspicions that they don't. According to Alexa's domain ranks 25 millionth most popular online, yet somehow they have received 49.5 Million takedown notices, well on its way to taking first place in this dubious honor. How does this happen?

Well, firstly, almost all of the takedown notices are coming from APDIF do Brasil, the Brazilian Association for the Protection of the Intellectual Rights of Phonograms. It appears as if someone in Brazil has been guessing links, typing them into the webpage, and guess what, they exist, and they have to report them. Never mind the fact that the site automatically creates a page for every typed in URL, and fills it with randomly scraped content, most of it seemingly from Youtube.

Having some fleeting familiarity with Brazil, I'd say this all comes down to Jeitinho Brasileiro, or the Brazilian Way. It's just how you cut corners and bend the rules and get things done in Brazil, and Brazilians find it to be an endearing enough part of their culture that they have given it a name. Are you getting paid by the piracy link you report? Find a webpage that will create piracy links on demand!

Check out, HardOCP's Greatest Hits:

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The problem here is that in real terms, none of these URLs exist until they’re requested. However, APDIF’s guesses are entertained by the site, which creates a random page of music for every search. The content on these auto-generated pages cycles, but it never relates to the searches being put in. As shown below, even TorrentFreak’s Greatest Hits Volume 77 is a winner