French courts may force Google to censor terms Torrent, RapidShare, and Megaupload

Google has been fighting in French courts against the music industry group SNEP. Google has been hit with a setback in its legal battle with the French Supreme Court ruling that Google can be required to censor the search terms Torrent, RapidShare, and Megaupload. According to the courts, Google indirectly helps copyright infringement by failing to filter these specific search terms.

Google's legal case is now headed to an appeals court for a final ruling. The case has been going on since early 2010 when SNEP filed suit against Google to force the company to filter certain terms from its Instant and Autocomplete features. SNEP has argued during the case that Google is facilitating piracy by not filtering those search terms, allowing searchers to find torrents and the two named websites.

The French court has recognized that Google is not accountable for any of the copyright infringement that takes place on other websites. However, the court does say that Google has a responsibility to make it more difficult for the public to find unauthorized content. The court and the music industry association believes that by filtering those search terms Google could help prevent future copyright infringement.

[via TorrentFreak]