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Watchdog group flags top pirated films on Google Video

The National Legal and Policy Center is after Google to clean up copyright infringement on its video sites.

Forget Joost, CinemaNow, NewCo., or any of the other companies scurrying to distribute movies and TV shows online. The company offering the best material on the Web right now may be Google Video.

Of course, many of the films and shows found there are bootlegs posted to the site in violation of copyright law. As first reported by CNET, the National Legal and Policy Center (NLPC) a non-profit group that advocates for integrity and fair play in the public sector, has been reviewing copyright violations at YouTube and Google Video.

On Tuesday, the NLPC issued a new top 50 list of films and shows found in their entirety at Google Video. Among them are three films that debuted in the U.S. this year: Spiderman III, 300, and Meet the Robinsons.

In a statement, the NLPC poked fun at Google for failing to come up with a filtering technology that would prevent users from uploading pirated material. Google has said for months that it is working on such technology.

"Ironically, many other Internet operations such as MySpace, TorrentSpy, DailyMotion and have set up filtering systems," the NLPC said in a press release. "Google is a $158 billion company with arguably the most advanced search technology in the world. The argument that they cannot block pirated content because of technological or financial reasons is laughable."

Google has always argued that it removes copyright material once notified by the owner, as required by law.

"For all of the content we host, whether from premium content providers or creative end-users, we require the content provider to hold all necessary rights to the material," said Gabriel Stricker, a Google spokesperson said in an e-mail. "We cooperate with copyright holders to identify and promptly remove any infringing content. Of course, no system is bulletproof.

"As a company that respects the rights of copyright holders, we will continue to take the lead in providing state-of-the-art (Digital Millenneum Copyright Act) tools and processes for all copyright holders."

Google's YouTube, the Web's No.1 video-sharing site, has been accused for encouraging copyright violations for a long time and is facing multiple lawsuits, including one filed by Viacom. But the NLPC said it has focused on Google Video because it gets less attention but is still full of stolen full-length videos.