Google Crackdown Is Going To Make Streaming Illegal Football A Lot Harder

Your weekend: ruined

You know the drill. It's match day and either you can't face going to the pub or the team you support is too crap to be on Sky anyway.

So you fire up your laptop, find a dodgy stream and settle in for 90 minutes of Newcastle vs Brentford rendered in glitchy pixels and commentated on by some random American who keeps talking about 'goal attacks'. You do for the love of the game.

Well not for much longer, if the latest attempt to crack down on illegal sports streaming, pirated music and other of lives simple pleasures by Google and Bing works as it should.

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The search giants have signed up to a new voluntary code of practice nominally aimed at 'protecting users' safety and prevent them from visiting disreputable content providers', which is obviously code for ruining your weekend so an Australian octogenarian somewhere can make more money.

In a nutshell, it means any naughty websites that receive notices from rights holders – like, for example, Sky Sports – will be demoted in search results, meaning they're be far harder to find.

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Eddy Leviten, director general at the Alliance for Intellectual Property, said: "Sometimes people will search for something and they will end up unwittingly being taken to a pirated piece of content.

"What we want to ensure is that the results at the top of the search engines are the genuine ones. It is about protecting people who use the internet, but also protecting the creators of that material too."

Best get familiar with page ten of those search results, then.