Question Linking Google searches and the line

Discussion in 'Site Discussions & Suggestions' started by Xeology, Dec 30, 2015.

  1. Xeology
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    Xeology GBAtemp Regular

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    I have seen many people, here and other places, skirt laws against linking to piracy sites by linking to crafted google searches in a way where the user of the link pretty much knows what they need to be clicking on.

    At what point does this cross the line?

    Is linking to a google search containing the URL too far? I'm assuming it is as it contains the link.

    What of linking to a google search that results in the desired url being the first result? What about the only result?

    What about being in the first few results?

    First page?

    How about just telling people what to search? Whats the difference to linking the search and telling the person what to search?

    Where is the line? As this is such a gray area and you are not truly linking to anything but google, can you really draw a picture where this is a bad work around?

    Where is the line?

    Cant help but to feel like this ends up as a Socrates Paradox. When does linking to google become linking to piracy, furthermore when does banning of linking to google just become outright oppression and censorship?
     
    Last edited by Xeology, Dec 30, 2015


  2. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Lines in the sand are best left to pedants and lawyers, though the latter will tend to try to reach as far as they can.

    The reason links/downloads are not allowed are not necessarily because we deem the acts that follow wrong (it would be a massive logical dissonance to do so) but more because it serves no great purpose and is very easy to get to*. I can not say it does no harm (Google seems to drive things down for sites that do it) and I can not say it would not have some benefit if we could dodge the takedowns. To that end I could either do the famous judge remark of "I don't know how to define it but I will know it when I see it" or the general concept underpinning the rules of the site which largely amounts to "just don't take the piss". What you describe would probably count as that and get removed.

    *I say having variously contemplated the nature of computing, distribution of illicit data and the history thereof for something approaching the decades mark now and apparently being good enough at it that I get a funny colour next to my name here.

    "become outright oppression and censorship"
    Never. GBAtemp makes its own rules and thus it can not be.
     
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  3. Xeology
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    Xeology GBAtemp Regular

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    I feel as if this is to dismissive of the conundrum we have here. This is a major issue after all.

    For instance I can craft a google search that pulls up that ISO site for 3ds with a specific cia file download link in it without using any terms in the search that indicates the site, the sites name, the fact that I am looking for a pirated copy, or that I am even attempting anything illegal, yet that result will be at the top. How can you handle that?

    You can easily say, oh well there's piracy links so you cant do that, yet if I type in a listing for star wars or a game there will be a chilling effects link right at the bottom with that piracy link regardless, so right there that policy turns into censorship. You end up with no linking to search engines, that's absurd.

    However lets take it one step further, now instead of linking I can provide search terms that do the same things as stated above. One of course results in intended piracy results, and one doesn't, but they both produce the same results, piracy links within 1 click.

    So, what stops me from posting a link right here and now that produces a top result to that ISO site for 3ds with say a link to majoras mask in it if I use absolutely no terminology related to piracy?

    Doesn't this warrant some kind of guidelines?
     
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  4. Jack_Sparrow

    Jack_Sparrow Ruthless Pirate

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    Yeah this seems like a big loophole that users can use... I guess i've really never thought of this, and the terms of service don't say against it.
     
  5. Xeology
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    Xeology GBAtemp Regular

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    Also Chilling Effects is a legal page, so can I not link to a chilling effects page and indicate specific indexes?

    What if I made a program that auto searches based on a hash or algorithm of some sort. You plug in an index and a hash/id and it opens a webpage to a specific piracy site. Since it utilizes random bits of data unprotected by copyright law, hashes/ids and indexes and a site that is legal, is anything illegal actually happening?
     
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  6. Jack_Sparrow

    Jack_Sparrow Ruthless Pirate

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    I wonder more if this can be punishable by law, whether this breaks GBATemp's terms of service. If users we're to link like this here, could the site get in trouble?? :unsure:
     
  7. Xeology
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    Xeology GBAtemp Regular

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    How, https://www.lumendatabase.org/notices/XXXXX for instance. XXXXXX is the ID of the notice, each link is indexed. I can make an algorithm that produces a specific number based on a specific hash and can generate those hashes. Those hashes are gibberish. Now if I release a program that plugs those in, scrapes the specified index, and opens a browser to the link, what is the issue? Never once did I provide the link, the data, or even any copyrighted material. I provided a legit program and garbage hashes.

    Hell I dont even think that I would need to hash those ids or make any algorithm, just provide strait numbers. How can you copyright numbers?
     
  8. Sicklyboy

    Sicklyboy Resident Mechanical Keyboard Addict

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    [̲̅$̲̅(̲̅ ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°̲̅)̲̅$̲̅]
    I think the guideline here is common sense and context. If someone says "Hey does anyone have any information on if there has been any leaked star wars information", a compoletely innocuous question, and someone says "Here check this search http://bfy.tw/3Vll" and a link to a torrent site pops up a few results down the page that's completely non-intentional.

    If someone says "Hey where do I download the new pokeymon rom" and you reply "Check this search you might find something in the first link http://bfy.tw/3Vlb" it's pretty clear that at that point you're intentionally trying to skirt the rules.

    The former is understandable. The latter is unacceptable. And if you can't see a differentiation there you need to seriously reconsider what you post here.
     
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  9. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Unrelated to this but data when it is rendered in some form is just hex. What is more interesting is the idea of illegal primes, the better worked examples coming from discussions about decss.
    http://fatphil.org/maths/illegal1.html
     
  10. Xeology
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    Xeology GBAtemp Regular

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    The world must be nice when everything is black and white. However here in reality everything is not black and white.

    "And if you can't see a differentiation there you need to seriously reconsider what you post here."

    Also how about a little respect in that tone of yours as this was an honest and respectful conversation beforehand. I believe that is part of the ToS as well.

    "If someone says "Hey where do I download the new pokeymon rom" and you reply "Check this search you might find something in the first link http://bfy.tw/3Vlb" it's pretty clear that at that point you're intentionally trying to skirt the rules."

    Ok, then how about when I provide the search terms with no indication that the terms are searching for something illegal? Hell saying "Google it" is no better at this point as it contains those piracy links!

    The phrase, "That iso site" in relation to 3ds, that mods use as well, makes a piracy site the top result, exactly what you spoke out against. You dont draw issue with that though? Singling me out because you don't like the point I am making?

    -snip-

    This is a legitimate link, to a legitimate site, for a legitimate complaint, and it is 100% legal to exist and for me to post this where ever I please, whenever I please, however I please. In fact, I'm going to go paste this on my Facebook and report the link myself. As I have done before with no repercussions, because it's a legal site and link with legal content.

    Yet its a treasure trove.

    Go ahead, prove my point and remove that link, because now you are removing perfectly legal content and completely proved my point that there is no definable line.

    So, I repeat my question, where is the line?

    @FAST6191 I've tinkered with a similar thought experiment with using an index for a specific location in the digits of PI, since PI is infinite and produces all possible combinations, to produce a program out of the number. Of course its not feasible and unpractical, but it is possible, therefore making PI an illegal number as it contains all copyrighted and future copyrighted material.
     
    Last edited by Xeology, Dec 30, 2015
  11. Sicklyboy

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    And I will remove it. Just because it is legal to share doesn't mean it's within the terms you agreed to when signing up to use this site.

    https://gbatemp.net/help/terms

    Just like sharing pornographic pictures may be legal, it's definitely not within the terms you agreed to here.
     
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  12. Xeology
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    Xeology GBAtemp Regular

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    I never agreed to, or even see, anything that says anything about linking to sites that index legal notices. Want to provide the location of that part?

    Or are you talking about the containing piracy part?

    Google is against it than. So is every search engine.

    https://www.google.com/#q=star+wars+force+awakens+movie

    Here you go, star wars force awakens movie for anyone who is interested in the play times. Oh but wait, Mr. No Legal Indexes here may be against the fact that that same link is in the bottom of that page!
     
  13. Jack_Sparrow

    Jack_Sparrow Ruthless Pirate

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    Actually there was nothing he linked too that was against the terms (If i've read them correctly)

    I quote from the terms:

    • We DO NOT HOST or PROVIDE ROMs/WADs/ISOs; or link to websites that do contain ROMs/WADs/ISOs.
    • Members may NOT ASK and MAY NOT PROVIDE INFORMATION or LINKS for and to places that provide ROM, WAD, and ISO files.
    • Members may also NOT mention torrent or warez-containing sites or channels by name or otherwise.
    • We do not condone piracy in any way.
    • Please go elsewhere if you only wish to download or share illegal files. The GBAtemp Forums are for discussion ONLY.

    He was not providing any link whatsoever to any "WADs, ISOs, or ROM files"
     
  14. Xeology
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    Xeology GBAtemp Regular

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    Get the picture here? Your arbitrary moral lines are meaningless in the light of the current online environment.

    Based on your line, saying google "star wars force awakens movie" is over that line. That's not even a link!

    Also shall I do a search on every moderator and staff member who has used the phrase "that iso site"? I want to see how your rules stack up against staff on the issue or if your moral lines only apply to those you disagree with.
     
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  15. Jack_Sparrow

    Jack_Sparrow Ruthless Pirate

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    I agree, the rules should either be changed among this, or made more clear as to what is right, and what isn't. It is not a matter of: "if you can't see a differentiation there you need to seriously reconsider what you post here." It's a matter of we need to set the guidelines more accurately.
     
  16. Xeology
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    Xeology GBAtemp Regular

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    They do need to be adjusted in the ToS, and it needs to apply to everyone.

    You dont want piracy, ban all google links the use of the word "ISO" in the 3ds section. Or you need to clearly state and set what is acceptable and that definition needs to be formed in reality, not some make believe black and white world and based entirely on some warped agenda supported by twisted ideals of whats right and whats wrong.

    Also I don't want to hear that backup crap for this one, there's plenty of guides on here teaching you how to setup systems for piracy, so you can cut the moral argument, we all know its crap.
     
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  17. jumpman17

    jumpman17 He's a semi-aquatic egg laying mammal of action!

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    Why would someone ever need to post a link to Google search results?

    Hey, does anyone have any info on this subject?
    Response A: Yes, here is a specific website for it www.specificinfoyouarelookingfor.com
    Response B: Do a Google search for it

    I seriously can't think of a single situation where someone would need to post a link to a Google search results page.
     
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  18. Jack_Sparrow

    Jack_Sparrow Ruthless Pirate

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    It's not so much the fact that it might never happen, it's the fact that if it we're to happen, what would be done about it? There seems to be no rule against it..
     
  19. Xeology
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    Xeology GBAtemp Regular

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    That iso site contains some useful update packs for the 3ds. <- Ive seen phrases like that. My point is that just linking the google search will provide the same result as saying that. Am I going to be banned for saying that? That's the point. Where is the line?

    — Posts automatically merged - Please don't double post! —

    In fact googling that whole sentence makes it one of the top results!

    https://gbatemp.net/search/24290167/?q="that+iso+site"&o=date

    Theres the search results for people who have said "that iso site"

    Should we be banning them all, they are providing info on piracy! They don't do it and it makes modding that much harder.

    Why stop there, whats the difference between saying google "that iso site for 3ds" and https://www.google.com/#q=that+iso+site+for+3ds

    That's the point.
     
  20. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    That happens to be the MD5 of a well known piracy site url.
    You would probably get away with that as we can not really expect people to brute force MD5 (though it is weak enough at this point to worry some I guess, and as I have told you it is a url then dictionary attacks would be a better option).

    Your algorithm example is at best computationally intensive (but still more doable in human time time) obfuscation -- the hash might have been gibberish to begin with but now is just a way to use a poor indexing system.

    Yes irrational numbers are a pain for a lot of things like this, however as I am not breaking the copyright of my monkey taking a picture of itself with a 1000 of its mates at typewriters then we are back to the intent and ease of use ideas. Yes various staff could possibly have fallen foul or something and probably linking https://torrentfreak.com/ would be enough to ping me (being the end of the year I imagine they have a discussion of the big trackers out there which by virtue of the duality of knowledge...), and if not then I guess I will seal the deal and link http://binsearch.info/ and http://nzbindex.nl/ (afraid my kung fu for groups, naming schemes, searching types and the types of obfuscation used will have to remain out of this). Likewise it is possibly only the very transitive nature of google that lets it get away with things -- many is the search where I have had intitle:"index of" (by the way kids that method is dead, the spammers got hold of it) or some such and knowing exactly what goes.

    If it helps you can come at it another way -- consider links and easy access methods completely irrelevant to the site's discussion (sub eof worthy) and to be pruned accordingly. It could then be that the link is relevant to the topic at hand but hey.

    Edit. If the ideas of intent and ease are too hazy then I have a final alternative.
    We do not want to end up in front of the beak (the only people to win there are lawyers and what a lawyer costs to so much as answer the phone we could probably fund several nice contests, field trips and server upgrades with). Much like when being chased you do not have to run fast, just faster than your friends, then here we do not have to be perfect, just better than the ones presently (and those we can foresee) getting their knuckles rapped.