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Google: Most takedown notices are illegitimate

Search powerhouse opposes new pro-copyright law in New Zealand and releases data that shows 57 percent of takedown notices are sent by companies trying to undermine a rival.

As part of a plea to lawmakers in New Zealand to overturn a new pro-copyright law, Google claims that most takedown notices are bogus.

According to a story in PC World, Google says 57 percent of the takedown notices it has received under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act were sent by businesses trying to undermine a competitor.

About 37 percent of the notices weren't valid copyright claims, Google wrote.

New Zealand is considering whether to force Internet service providers to cut off Web access to those accused of violating copyright law. Google opposes the plan.

The law would "undermine the incredible social and economic benefits" of the Web, Google told the lawmakers, and added that service termination is "disproportionate to the harm of copyright infringement online."

Google did not respond to an interview request.

I know many at the major film studios and music labels who would make the counterargument that cutting off Web access is not in any way out of line for punishing intellectual-property theft.

What Google was trying to prove with the figures is that with such a law in place, Web users could lose Internet access on "mere allegation."