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Google and Microsoft will stop showing piracy sites on the first page of results in the UK

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Google and Microsoft have both voluntarily agreed to follow a new code in the United Kingdom to de-list piracy websites from the front page of Google search and Bing results, as well as remove autocomplete terms that could direct users to illegal content, according to a report from The Telegraph.

In a statement to The Telegraph explaining the new code, Jo Johnson, the minister of state for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation, said, "It is essential that [consumers] are presented with links to legitimate websites and services, not provided with links to pirate sites.” The new code was advocated for by various media groups along with the British government, whose compliance (despite being voluntary) will be overseen by the Intellectual Property Office, which notes that roughly 15 percent of UK internet users access illegal content online.

The IPO will be able to recommend further action toward the search engine companies this summer, with the legislation adding fines or sanctions for non-compliance possible somewhere down the line.