I recently searched for the words “capitalism definition” on Google, and saw this at the bottom of the first results page:
In response to a legal request submitted to Google, we have removed 2 result(s) from this page. If you wish, you may read more about the request at ChillingEffects.org.
When I followed the link, the only information I could find is that an “Internet Watch Foundation” has submitted a “Child Pornography Complaint in Google Search.”
It appears that the “Internet Watch Foundation” submits a list of URL’s to Google which must be removed from search results. Google must do is – it may be held legally liable if it judges which URL’s are acceptable on an individual basis and makes a mistake. I tried some alternative searches and skimmed through the results, but I was unable to find anything non-political in the searches, much less pornographic.
This seems dubious to me. Various organizations are submitting a secret list of sites which are automatically removed by Google based on secret criteria. If the website was truly illegal, then why not prosecute the webmaster and take it down? The fact that it was delisted and not taken down suggests that it is not illegal in its jurisdiction, yet judged not worthy for me to see. I have no way to verify whether I am being prevented from seeing legitimate political speech, and even if I did have a way to find out which website was blocked, if the website really is child porn, viewing the site carries severe criminal penalties. (Actually, even attempting to view illegal content is a criminal offense.)
While law-abiding citizens have no way to know which websites they are forbidden to see, it is easy to browse anonymously with an anonymizing proxy. You just can’t speak out about the sensorship.
By the way, Australia already censors politically-incorrect websites, and has threatened to prosecute anyone who links to them.