Google Transparency Report: What governments remove from the Internet

Governments ask for content to be removed

A report released by Google lists the information that governments around the world have asked the search engine to remove from its servers -- and some of the content may surprise you.

Google says these governments ask countries to remove content for a variety of reasons, including allegations of defamation or violation of local laws.  In an effort to maintain transparency, Google releases this information in six-month periods -- limited where required by law.

In a report that spans July to December 2011, countries are listed in alphabetical order with descriptions of the content that each government asked to have taken down.  

For example, the United Kingdom's Association of Police Officers asked Google to remove five user accounts that allegedly promoted terrorism, and deleted approximately 640 videos in the process. 

In the United States, a local law enforcement agency asked Google to remove a blog because of a post that allegedly defamed a law enforcement official in a personal capacity.  Google states in the report that they did not comply with this defamation request -- but the request itself has been recorded.

Visit google.com/transparencyreport/removals/government/ to view the full report. 

For those with an interest in Internet transparency and media law, a wider array of information about online rights can be found at ChillingEffects.org.

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