Website uses SEO to blackmail

I recenty encountered a website that does the following:

  • The website publishes court rullings (which are permitted for publishing).
  • Allowes internal search using simple text. So you can find any case related to a person simply by typing his/her name.
  • Does SEO to have Google search result show the site on the first page when a name is searched. For example if you search John Doe, one of the first results is “John Doe is listed in Rulling website name”, and that link leads straight to any court rulling that person has been involved at, in any way. So basically Googling a name jumps any ugly devource or anything you had straight up to the first page and invites to read it.
  • Accepts requests to remove entries, but demands money for it.

Personaly I think the last 2 are blackmailing, and it’s an audacity. I’d like to ask the SEO experts if this kind of practice violates Googles terms, and if it does please assist me with reporting it to Google.
Hopefully they will take it off the engine.


So it’s public record information? I don’t see how this is any of Google’s concern - they only remove sites from their index if they either receive a court order to do so, or if they receive a DMCA notification from a representative of the rights holder in a copyright infringement issue.

If you feel there’s something illegal going on, contact the relevant authorities. The only other issue I can think of is perhaps the re-publishing rights of the court rulings may have limitations especially if the site owner is using them to make money. You should contact the court system about that.