If you happened to search for your favourite torrent website a few hours ago, you may have come across some pretty interesting search results. First reported by The Verge, Google's search results had randomly starting listing torrent websites as cards under its 'Popular on the web' section.
The source of the news comes from torrent blog, TorrentFreak, which pointed out that Google had suddenly started highlighting various, popular torrent websites upon typing in the "best torrent sites," search query.
Looking up "streaming sites" also showed pirated services alongside the usual Netflix, Hulu and other legitimate service providers.
Indeed, the move was unintentional and Google quickly pulled down the same. According to Engadget, a Google spokesperson confirmed that it was not what the company had in mind.
"These results are generated algorithmically, but in this particular case, do not reflect what we had in mind for this feature, and we are looking into it." said Google in a statement.
The odd search results indeed put Google in a spot, which has been doing plenty to maintain its ties with the music and video industries.
As per Engadget an older RIAA report, Google did very little to downrank pirate sites.
Google's search results indeed show the way online for millions of users daily. Over time many have accused Google of not doing enough to lessen its propagation of torrents or illegal downloads to its users. At the same, time users would also like to see an open web would see Google's filtering as hindering internet freedom.