What’s this about Google De-Indexation?

This is an extract from TWIS SEO Update 30 June 2017.

Read all about the effects of Canada’s Supreme Court ordering Google to de-index a site globally. Although unlikely, this could have significant ramifications for web disputes internationally – think legal tourism in friendly jurisdictions.

If you would like to discuss ways might impact your web business, please feel free to contact me.

#SEO #Google #InternetLaw

O Canada! Court Orders Global Google De-Indexation


  • As part of an ongoing dispute between two Canadian companies, the Canadian Supreme Court has ordered Google to deindex copied pages from the losing party’s sites globally, not just in Canada.
  • Google was not originally a party to this action.
  • It’s a good story but has limited real-world effects.

TWIS 30 June 2017 Canada Orders Google Global De-Indexation

Actions to take:

  1. Although, it’s not likely to be enforceable globally, this is worth keeping an eye on.
  2. If Google accepts the court’s instructions, be prepared to follow more court events globally, especially if any products are subject to competitor restrictions in different markets.
  3. If Google ignores it (likely), then carry on as normal. Google normally takes actions on its services only within the relevant court’s jurisdiction.
  4. Contact me if you would like to discuss this further.


This is a bit of an interesting challenge. As Google is effectively a global business, it has (reasonably) adhered to local laws and judgements. This means that if a particular country has issued a judgement, Google has followed that judgement within that country’s jurisdiction only. For example, Google has adhered to judgements within France, Spain, Germany, China, and of course, its home country the US.

Canada is a lovely place, full of lovely people, but this is a smidge of what the Americans call “judicial overreach”. It’s just not likely that Google would pay any attention to a global order to deindex a site from a local court. If it did, Google would need to pay attention to every country’s “global” judgements. This would lead to the delightful issue of “legal tourism” where cases would be brought in jurisdictions which are most likely to be friendly to the complainant and leading to a mass of conflicting “global” orders.

If Google does anything about this, aside from in Google Canada’s results, I would be very surprised.

More info:

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The State of SEO Mid 2017

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Thanks for reading. If you would like to discuss what these changes mean for your web property, or would like to know how to implement them, please feel free to contact me.

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