Google’s New Pirate 2.0 Update: What you need to know

What does this new update target?

We have seen a new update recently roll out from Google which does not follow their usual animal name theme (Panda, Penguin, Pigeon) and has been dubbed the ‘Pirate 2.0 Update’. The original Pirate update was rolled out years ago in a bid to combat copyright infringement and digital media piracy. This most recent update, the “Pirate 2.0”  has the same purpose as the original “Pirate” update and comes after Google received renewed criticism that it was not doing enough to squash the illegal sale of media. Essentially this revised update is Google looking to address these criticisms.

Why was it introduced?

Various members of the entertainment industry notably Ari Emanuel have criticized Google for not taking piracy seriously and not putting strict filters in place to prevent sites with illegal content from showing in it’s search results. The Pirate 2.0 update uses a combination of methods to  filter out these illegal sites from appearing in its search results  including  the number of times a site has received a Digital Millennium Copywright Act ” take down” request.

What does this mean for your website ?

There has been a lot of talk about this recent algorithm update having a negative effect for webmasters SEO  rankings. There has been online chatter that people have seen reduced website search engine ranking positions on Google, however this is most likely not related to this “Pirate” update.

The “Pirate” update specifically targets piracy related issues and so your average website should not be affected by the most recent changes although it does illustrate a more direct shift in Google looking at piracy much more closely. If your website does share digital media that it does not own then this is where things can take a turn for the worse, for example a popular download website  lost 98% of its traffic  when this recent update came into effect.

What to do now ?

Most websites can continue with their usual SEO practices as the most recent update targets searches containing words like “download” ” Free” and ” watch”. So moving forward we will start to see less Pirate websites appearing in the search results  for these type of key words,  and more legitimate sources for the media will now be shown such as “Amazon” “Google play” or “Net Flix”.

If you are not currently working on SEO for your website or are a bit unsure as to what exactly SEO and algorithms are all about check out our SEO page here. Or if you’d rather chat to a real life person, then we have you covered there too by calling us on (08) 9328 7000!