Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Google now deindexing some web pages based on FDA’s administrative agency findings

This would be OK if there were no dud agencies but government bodies often get things wrong

“It takes a lot to get Google to deindex a page, and thus hide it from searchers (at least from U.S.-based searchers). Unlike with YouTube, where Google exercises considerable editorial discretion, Google Search is generally aimed at indexing the Web, good and bad.

Until recently, there have been only a few categories of content that Google would deindex based on someone’s request (setting aside Google deindexing things itself based on a perception that someone is gaming its search algorithms, or that some site contains malware, and focusing just on Google search within the U.S.):

1. Legal obligation (mostly copyright ….

2. Confidential personally identifying information ….

3. Court orders addressed to third parties (chiefly in libel cases) ….

It has just emerged, though, that Google has decided to deindex based on a fourth category:

4. Administrative agency findings that sites illegally distribute material that risks physical harm to consumers:

Right now, this category appears to include just warning letters from the U.S. Food and Drug Administrations, generally sent to off-shore online pharmacies that illegally sell prescription drugs to the U.S. A Google representative told me that this is supposed to be a narrow policy, limited to fact findings by "administrative agencies that are charged with protecting consumers' physical safety from harm by products or services that they consume.


1 comment:

Bird of Paradise said...

Google has not produced its Logo celebrating Christmas and Easter