Brazil Wants Another Google Site -- YouTube -- Shut Down

from the good-luck-with-that dept

A few months ago, the Brazilian government got into a legal spat with Google after its Orkut social-networking site was being used for illegal activity. Google complied with some of the Brazilian demands, including shutting down parts of Orkut, but the government wasn't happy, and started harrassing Google's Brazilian office, which was just responsible for ad sales and had nothing to do with running Orkut. Now, a Brazilian judge has ordered that YouTube, another Google property, be shut down until it removes a celebrity sex video from its site. The video in question features a Brazilian model and her boyfriend having sex on a beach; it's been removed from YouTube several times, but users have uploaded it again and again. But don't expect your favorite source of exploding Mentos videos to disappear: just like with Orkut, the Brazilian court's going to have a hard time enforcing this order, since YouTube is based in the US, and generally subject to its laws and courts (except for local products in some cases).

Once again, the question of who has legal jurisdiction over the internet and sites on it comes into question. US courts tend to agree that online companies are bound by the laws of the country in which they're based, while there are continual efforts by groups like record companies and even some governments to assert that if an internet site can be reached from a particular place, it's subject to its laws and the jurisdiction of its courts. This leads to a problem of jurisdiction shopping, where people file lawsuits in unrelated countries to take advantage of their legal environments. Jurisdiction shopping, of course, isn't a new phenomenon, but the internet makes it a little easier. This is a sticky subject: the idea that anybody can be sued anywhere in the world for something the post online isn't a particularly appealing one, but many people don't have a problem with local laws being used to chase after criminals abroad when it comes to things like child pornography. So where is the line drawn, and who gets to determine it? While international treaties govern all sorts of things, international court systems have often been undermined by these very types of questions about jurisidiction.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    identicon
    Overcast, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 9:47am

    Why don't these countries just cut themselves off from the US Web and start their own??

    Or just block it from their end.

     

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      identicon
      partly sunny, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 9:53am

      Re:

      Cutting themselves off from the "US Web" would hurt them.

      Blocking it from their end would be too easy.

      Basically they're looking for a reason to bitch.

       

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    •  
      identicon
      brazilian_guy, Jan 10th, 2007 @ 5:49pm

      Re:

      Contrary to what was said in the article, the court order only states that access to youtube from inside Brazil should be blocked until they(youtube) develop an effective way of blocking the unauthorized video in question. The order was issued to the brazilian companies responsible for the connection with the international backbone. So, the article LIES when it says that the court intended youtube to be shut down for everyone in the world.

       

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 9:52am

    Because they dont bear the burden right now of trying to censor it. They can just lash out and find a way to make someone else do it.

    And, sometimes they do.

     

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    misanthropic humanist, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 9:55am

    obvious boundaries

    "... the Brazilian court's going to have a hard time enforcing this order, since YouTube is based in the US, and generally subject to its laws and courts (except for local products in some cases). Once again, the question of who has legal jurisdiction over the internet and sites on it comes into question. US courts tend to agree that online companies are bound by the laws of the country in which they're based"

    Great. So as AllofMP3.com asserted, the RIAA can shove their lawsuit up their ass.

    Of course companies are bound by the laws of their country, that is the essence of soverignty and the nation state. To think otherwise is to ask for war. And it wouldn't be the first time wars have started over trade.

    In this case the Brazillians can just suck it up, or go to New York and file a case in the country of juristiction. Likewise the USA can keep its fat nose out of Russian affairs.

     

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    Jerry H., Jan 4th, 2007 @ 10:06am

    For crying out loud!

    What the hell is the name of the female celebrity or video clip they Brazil is concerned about?!

    PRIORITIES, PEOPLE!!!!!!!

     

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    identicon
    Overcast, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 10:09am

    Really doesn't matter anyway, I'm sure there are a hundred thousand copies out on the file sharing networks anyway.

    I never really feel sorry for the government's when they don't get their way. Actually, that's a good thing.

    Government in general is all about a select few and their hunger for power. Not really about anything else. Just a bunch of rich people who desire more power.

    Things that 'the common' people control, like the internet is a real thorn in their side.

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 10:40am

    Internet Freedom

    Just more maneuvering for control of the internet. Businesses and governments are struggling to find a way to gain control over the internet for financial and political reasons. I'm sure they will eventually be successful (they already are at some levels). For now, the internet remains 'Vox Populi', but don't bet your childrens college money that it will remain that way.

     

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      Wolff000, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 12:11pm

      Re: Internet Freedom

      No the US pretty much controls the net. It is something a lot of companies, governments and other international bodies have been screaming foul about for awhile. There have been a few techdirt articles on it but I'm lazy and don't feel like digging for some examples. Anyways we need an international body of people that represent a large majority of countries to decide these types of things. These issues are not going to go away and the current way of handling them is very very flawed. Some sort of system needs to be setup that can enforce and regulate net "laws". It would be difficult and complicated but would save a lot of people a lot of time and money.

       

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        techguy83, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 12:16pm

        Re: Re: Internet Freedom

        Great, so now we want to allow China and the other internet censoring countries to control what content can be accessed by the world? hmm.... let me think.... umm NO!

        Better to let it stay the way it is, with everything open and countries that censor the net censoring the net.

         

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        YouKnowNothing, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 8:45am

        Re: Re: Internet Freedom

        "Anyways we need an international body of people that represent a large majority of countries to decide these types of things."

        No we don't. The US is handling it just fine. If you don't like it, don't use it. Go build your own internet.

        "These issues are not going to go away and the current way of handling them is very very flawed."

        What "issues?" Freedom of expression? Sovereignty of nations? How the hell does Brazil have any right in telling *any* web site not hosted in Brazil that they should be shut down? YOUTUBE IS NOT AT FAULT. THE RESPONSIBILITY IS WITH THE PEOPLE WHO UPLOAD THE VIDEOS TO YOUTUBE. Jesus-H-Fucking-Christ, why is this so hard to understand?

        "Some sort of system needs to be setup that can enforce and regulate net "laws"."

        No, it doesn't. That's the last thing needed on the internet. The internet is what it is today expressly because there was no "system" to "enforce and regulate" anything. What you are suggesting is Censorship and Oversight like they have in China.

        "It would be difficult and complicated but would save a lot of people a lot of time and money."

        Try impossible and would cost jillions of dollars and would be a complete waste of time.

         

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 11:28am

    I wanna see that vid

     

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    identicon
    Nina, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 11:29am

    You know, if you all bothered to look why the Brazilian government hassled Google the first time, you'd see it was to stump out child porn found on Orkut. But hey, Google and other Web prawlers and fiends capitalizing on people's information just can't share who the perverts are. Can't there be any rules of common sense and justice?

     

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      identicon
      Dizzle, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 11:38am

      Re:

      Can't there be any rules of common sense and justice?


      No, there cannot. 'common' sense is not common and even if it were it could not be defined to the satisfaction of people who wish to project their 'sense' on others. Similarly, 'Justice' is very much in the eye of the beholder. It's not Google's (or any other private persone or company) responsibility to enforce laws and they certainly cannot be expected to abide by the vast array of conflicting, contradictory and just plain crazy laws of all the nations on the planet.

       

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        brazilian_guy, Jan 10th, 2007 @ 6:07pm

        Re: Re:

        Justice is in the eye of the beholder?!.... I would like to ask you if you would still think the same if you found your 7 years old little girl agonizing in the garden, after being brutally spanked and raped by a stranger... That's the sort of criminal that Google refused to help brazilian government identify.

         

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    identicon
    misanthropic humanist, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 12:36pm

    Did anyone RTFA

    "Daniela Cicarelli, a model and ex-wife of soccer great Ronaldo, sued YouTube after a video of her apparently having sex in shallow water on a beach with her boyfriend was posted to the site.

    For days it was the most viewed video in Brazil."

    That's hilarious! A celebrity is causing this rumpus. And we all know why they do it - I mean why celebrities with egos the size of galaxys deliberately expose themselves to the camera and then cry foul. It's all about the publicity.

    Yeah wink about that Ronaldo!

    I'm curious, - who is the missing link? Who is putting the pressure on the Brazillian government as part of a celebrity PR exposure exercise? Some money has changed hands here for sure.

    Here's two thoughts...

    1) Should they be prosecuted for exhibitionism/exposure (was it a public beach)

    2) How do those that assert what you do in public is public (not private) when there are cameras about square that with their position on ubiquitous surveillance?

    I think they shagging and very much HOPING there was a camera on them. Attention whores :)

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 1:23pm

    if you don't want to see yourself on the internet then you shouldn't have sex where you could be video taped

     

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    identicon
    misanthropic humanist, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 3:06pm

    Re: Re: obvious boundaries

    съешьте мое мясо

     

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    identicon
    misanthropic humanist, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 4:34pm

    my internet

    "If you don't like it, don't use it. Go build your own internet."


    Yeah?! I will. With Blackjack. And Hookers. In fact, forget the internet...

     

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    identicon
    tina oiticica harris, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 7:22pm

    YouTube and Brazil

    The verdict was partially proferred by a judge in a São Paulo court, not a federal court. It was confusing as to what to shut down. Only in one's dreams does one have the power to shut down YouTube "so that the video is no longer available" :P A quick search will show tons of sites, not to mention blogs that have this video.
    Why should Brazilians, the ones who made Cicarelli famous, be penalized? Why should anyone be penalized?

    Please clarify your headline. Brazil doens't want to shut YT. Ms. Cicarelli's lawyer spread a rumor based on a lawsuit on her and her boyfriend's behalf. Oh, he's not a banker; he works for Merryl Lynch. And she is ex-Mrs.Ronaldo fenômeno, a model and VJ for EmpTv.

     

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    identicon
    FORGOTMYNAME, Jan 15th, 2007 @ 11:44pm

    youtube

    What is happening with Youtube now? is the site down. I'm in Australia and i can't gain access to the site at all now. I've tried at many internet cafes, has Australia blocked access to Youtube?

     

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    technofear (profile), Jun 28th, 2007 @ 10:43pm

    >>"The internet is what it is today expressly because there was no "system" to "enforce and regulate" anything. What you are suggesting is Censorship and Oversight like they have in China. "

     

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    technofear (profile), Jun 28th, 2007 @ 10:46pm

    [cut my last post off...]
    >>"The internet is what it is today expressly because there was no "system" to "enforce and regulate" anything. What you are suggesting is Censorship and Oversight like they have in China. "

    Time to send those horses and lottery balls down the internet 'pipes' and clear all this rubbish out (inc. the illegal to access in the US gambling sites).

     

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    identicon
    Chris Miller, Jul 4th, 2007 @ 7:55am

    Wow brazil is a bitch

    i think Brazil needs to stay the hell out of Googles Bussiness And stop bitching I have nothing Aginst That video and They just Want to Start Trouble Why Don't brazil just Tell all there internet providers to just block you tube and possibly google all together. This Doesn't make and freakin Sence=/

     

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    identicon
    kat12923, Sep 10th, 2007 @ 6:04pm

    youtubeluvs me

    i luv youtube i have lots of friends there and i am 14 yrs old and i luv youtube i hope youtube does not shut down

     

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    identicon
    1 of the bigest edge fans, Jan 3rd, 2008 @ 2:15am

    wtf

    you tube is shuting down??? i liked the bratilian nation
    but dis is crosing the line!!!(PS:i stil love brazillina girls big bobs am graet ass)bot dont shot down you tube i spend 80% of my time on the internet ther pls dot shut it down or am going to comlany to the prezident of brazil
    even if i most learn how to speak brazilian!!!f**k the prezident save youtube!!!

     

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