According to Deadline, Google and Microsoft have agreed to adopt a new “voluntary code of practice” in the U.K. that will involve them taking steps to make it harder for would-be pirates to find torrent websites. Now, sites that have received multiple copyright infringement notices will be blocked from the first page of Google or Bing search results, and the companies will also continue to “demote” repeat offenders. Interestingly, this agreement isn’t just designed to stop people from knowingly pirating movies or TV shows or whatever, but also to help people who don’t realize they’re pirating something from stumbling onto a website that just happens to have convenient download links for movies that are still in theaters or TV shows that haven’t even aired yet.
It’s sort of like trying to stop people from speeding by removing the higher numbers from the speedometers in their cars and hoping nobody will realize how fast they can go, but it sounds like entertainment industry executives believe that this is better than nothing. The Deadline story also notes that this agreement between Google and Microsoft is “a world first,” so now they might be more willing to work together and future anti-piracy measures as well.