Yesterday on the Official Google Blog, Matt Braithwaite posted an article about transparency reports, including some very frank details about Google’s dealings with removal requests and user data requests.
Google, in their typical style of blowing us away with information, has given users multiple ways to view the information, broken down by country, date range, and request types. The detail goes right down to traffic by time and location, allowing users to actually visualize things like the Egyptian protests.
It is also very interesting to see the compliance of requests, showing an understanding of internet awareness and rights. Most countries had a rather high success rate in petitioning Google to remove information, South Korea managed 32, 152 requests with a sterling 100% success rate.
India however was at the opposite end of the spectrum with a %22 rate of compliance to their removal requests.
The only place I wasn’t impressed by the level of detail was the geographical sources of the removal requests.
I wasn’t expecting to get street address details, but it would have been great to see what areas the complaints originate from vs. a country level map.
Unless Saskatchewan is really where all the complaints from Canada came from?
Still this is a new level of transparency for Google:
- First time revealing compliance % for requests
- More information on request sources
- Breakdown of user, local, federal, police, government, etc.
- Notification of effected users by request
- Clear metric of Government influence on search results
Amazingly there’s still a rally cry for the FTC investigations into Google.
While I support honesty and thoroughly unbiased policing, I do have to wonder what anyone expects to learn that previous investigations hasn’t turned up. Especially when looking at a company as transparent as Google.