Google removed two links from its search engine to a site hosting nude photos of Jennifer Lawrence, nearly a month after her legal team first asked it to do so, The Guardian reported on Monday.
But the website hosting the photos changed its domain name and successfully found its way back onto Google Search within hours of being removed, demonstrating just how difficult it is to scrub unwanted images from the Internet. Google would require an additional takedown notice from the Oscar-winning actress's to remove the new site from its search engine as outlined in its copyright removal protocol.
Lawrence's lawyers at Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp first filed requests on September 24 to remove links to the site, thefappening.eu, from Google search results, according to Chilling Effects, a database that tracks legal requests for the removal of online materials.
The photos in question were part of a massive celebrity photo leak in August. Lawrence addressed the scandal earlier this month in an interview with Vanity Fair, telling anyone who looked at the images to "cower in shame" and calling the hacker's leak a "sex crime."
Lawrence's requests were filed under the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), which requires that Internet service providers remove copyrighted material upon request.
When contacted by The Huffington Post, Google said that it taken down a number of images and links related to the scandal and has a standard procedure for responding to these requests. When asked to discuss the particularities of Lawrence's case, the company referred HuffPost to an October 2 statement responding to entertainment lawyer Martin Singer, who had threatened Google with a $100 million lawsuit related to the celebrity photo leak.
“We’ve removed tens of thousands of pictures within hours of the requests being made – and we have closed hundreds of accounts," a Google spokesperson said at the time. "The internet is used for many good things. Stealing people’s private photos is not one of them."
Singer, whose firm represents more than a dozen of the female celebrities whose photos were released in the August leak, has yet to take legal action against Google.