Music pirates eager to make Google's new music service the latest front in their ongoing attempts to destroy the music industry are officially on notice: Google will remove any and all illegal songs stored in its cloud.
The news comes from a Q&A session at Google's IO conference, during which a number of Google executives took the time to answer questions from the press.
Google has a variety of tools at its disposal to identify illegal files. Via a method known as digital music watermarking, record companies can encode files with a variety information, including when and where the song was purchased. If Google Music detects multiple copies of the same information, it can filter the files that contain it, preventing users from uploading the files. Conversely, Google could also be forced by record labels into only accepting music uploads that feature that sort of identifying information.
The news is a bit ironic considering the question of the legality of Google Music itself. Google, of course denies allegations that the service is an illegal one. "What we launched today is a completely legal service, and stores a user’s personal collection in the cloud," said Google's Jamie Rosenberg today. Let's hope the major record labels agree.