1. ITV Report

Google takes down 640 alleged YouTube 'terror videos'

People walk past a logo next to the main entrance of the Google building in Zurich Photo: Reuters

Google took down 640 videos from YouTube in the second half of 2011 amid fears they may promote terror.

The request to close five user accounts came from the Association of Chief Police Officers.

Google agreed with their concerns and deleted them.

Details were released in the company's Transparency Report.

It shows that while Google agreed with Acpo's request, it refused to comply with others.

  • Canada's Passport Office asked for footage to be removed of a Canadian citizen urinating on his passport and then flushing it down the toilet. Google refused.
  • It also would not bow to a request from Pakistan's Ministry of Information Technology to delete six videos satirising its army and senior politicians.

However, the search engine did take action at certain times.

  • A German court order resulted in the removal of 898 search results linking to forums and blogs containing statements about a government agency and one of its employees that the court determined were not credible.
  • Google also received a request to remove 70 YouTube videos for allegedly violating the German Children and Young Persons Act. It restricted some of the videos from view in Germany in accordance with local laws.
  • It acceded to a request to block more than 100 YouTube videos in Thailand allegedly insulting its monarchy - which is a crime in the country.
  • Google terminated four YouTube accounts responsible for videos that allegedly contained threatening and harassing content after complaints by different US law enforcement agencies.

Hungary, Russia and Turkey had 0% of their requests partially or fully complied with where as 93% of America's requests were successful, according to Google's figures.