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I found that a competitors website is using blatant screenshots of Google Maps satellite imagery, clearly violating Googles copyright. I'm not talking about an actual map, I'm talking about JPEG files of screenshots (from what appears to be a tablet) of satellite imagery.

However, I can't find any way to report this to Google - if I go to report a copyright violation, I must be either the copyright holder or a legal council representing them.

Is there any way to report a site that violates Googles own copyright to Google?

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  • Related : 1, 2, 3
    – Rubén
    Aug 23, 2021 at 15:57
  • If you're worried about them using pictures from Google, are you really their competition?
    – bdb484
    Aug 23, 2021 at 17:56
  • I’m voting to close this question because it's not a question about the law, it's about a company's procedures.
    – Ryan M
    Aug 24, 2021 at 2:13
  • How can you be sure that the company didn't actually get permission from Google? Sure, maybe it seems unlikely, but the point is, you don't really know. Often, when things are used with permission, a notice like "Copyright blah blah blah. Used with permission." is shown somewhere. But that sort of notice is usually not a requirement.
    – Brandin
    Aug 24, 2021 at 14:17

1 Answer 1

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There's a legal issue, and a practical issue. If you witness a crime, you can inform the police and something may happen. The FBI does actually investigate criminal copyright infringement, but they also don't respond to concerned-citizen complaints, only complaints of copyright holders (and not all of them). You cannot use DMCA takedown to get the service provider to remove the content (or shut down the site, or whatever would be necessary), since only the copyright holder can make the required sworn statements. So you have no legal recourse.

A practical solution is to tell Google. This link could have been a way to inform them, but it seems to always resolve to identifying plausible DMCA takedown requests, and if you truthfully answer the "are you the copyright holder" question, you are told to go away. Even if you lie at the preliminary stage, the procedure ends with you making a sworn statement, and you can't lie on one of those.

This information might allow you to send them a letter, which they might read. They might simply not consider it worth their time.

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