Hitler Rants Video About DMCA Takedowns Is Taken Down Itself

from the recursive-loop dept

The super popular "Hitler rants..." meme is now under fire by Constantin Film, the German production company behind Downfall, from which the original clip is taken. According to TechCrunch, Constantin started filing DMCA takedowns on many of the popular YouTube variants of the oft re-subtitled clip. Particularly ironic is the fact that the director of the movie enjoys the clips himself -- but of course, since the producer holds the copyright to the movie, the director has no real say in the matter.

In a mind-blowing meta way, the most amusing video caught in this mess is the takedown of the video that parodies these takedowns themselves:

Since this video, which uses the same Downfall clip in question, can be considered parody, then it should be covered under fair use. Since its creator filed a dispute after it was taken down, for now, the video is viewable on YouTube (and on Vimeo, as in the link above), awaiting review from Constantin on the copyright claim.

That said, Constatin has a lot of work to do if it truly wants to remove all instances of this video online. There are thousands of variants available and, in looking through a list of the some of the most popular videos, not even all of those have been taken down yet. Even so, when a popular variant is taken down, the video can be posted to other sites, as in the case of "Hitler Finds Out About the iPhone 4g Leak," the video that supposedly was the first of the videos to be taken down.

It's not clear what Constantin is looking to gain by issuing these takedowns. Constantin is killing the very promotional vehicle that has been driving sales and rentals of Downfall itself. Each viewing of these videos has played a part in pulling the 2004 movie out of oblivion -- without these millions of views, very few, if any, people would have ever heard of the movie.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    icon
    Ima Fish (profile), Apr 21st, 2010 @ 5:11am

    "Constantin is killing the very promotional vehicle that has been driving sales and rentals of Downfall itself"

    I rented it on Netflix because of these parodies. It's a great movie. Without the parodies, there is simply no way I ever would have heard of it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 5:21am

    Man, don't you just hate it when people do stuff to make you money? Better DMCA those bastards.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    drewmerc (profile), Apr 21st, 2010 @ 5:28am

    i'm guessing these dcma's are just to get the film back into the news
    nothing more than a money grab

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Simon, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 5:50am

    Stats?

    Any stats on rental/sales after the parodies started appearing compared with before? I know I'd never heard of it before the parodies. [I agree 100% that the takedown is stupid, just curious if there's any firm evidence for the parodies providing benefits to the original work]

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 5:54am

      Re: Stats?

      The Hitler regime would probably try to hide those Stats. Then someone would probably leak those stats and Hitler would almost have a heart attack.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:17am

      Re: Stats?

      i suspect most people seeing the parodies didnt know about the original movie and didnt care. they were there for the joke not a movie.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:26am

        Re: Re: Stats?

        Even if true, this doesn't justify DMCA takedowns.

         

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      •  
        icon
        Chronno S. Trigger (profile), Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:49am

        Re: Re: Stats?

        Most, yes. But even if one more person (AKA: Ima Fish) pays for it, would that not be a good thing? These spoofs won't replace the actual movie, they won't stop people from watching it.

         

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Sean O, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 5:58am

    See also the original meta Hitler Downfall parody:
    http://sean-o.com/hitlermeme

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    NAMELESS.ONE, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:03am

    send a copy to michael geist

    OH and then ask him why he bans anyone that uises the LETTERS
    H.I.T.L.E.R
    in that combination...lol.

    ITS have fun with lawyers day

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Jake, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:12am

    On the other hand, that particular joke is becoming rather stale now that everyone and his dog has done some variation on the basic formula.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Mikecancook, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:18am

    Now I'm conflicted. Because of these parodies I really wanted to see this movie. Especially since the producer has until recently been a good sport about it and letting it go. But now that they are being a raging bag of 'D' about it. I don't want to support them. It's not like I don't have a million other options for movies to watch.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    MRK, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:19am

    Really someone should just issue a DMCA take down against every video in YouTube. A simple bot that scrapes YouTube for every video and issues a DMCA take down notice. To illustrate how one-sided the current system is.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:23am

      Re:

      That's not a bad idea. It would encourage the creation of laws that allow service providers more leeway to inspect takedowns before automatically taking something down. It would also be illegal so I'm not encouraging it.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:27am

        Re: Re:

        Youtube has no problem enforcing illegal takedowns when Constantin does it. Then again, Youtube has never been a paragon of free speech.

         

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 11:15am

      Re:

      good idea. you run it and sign your name on each one. enjoy the lawsuits. absolutely moronic. while you are at it why not send tips to the fbi that every one of your high school teachers are trading kiddie porn too? your ideas are moronic.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    mdmadph (profile), Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:24am

    "We might as well all be come Communists -- like Stallman!"

    Oh, ha ha. Very funny.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    Paddy (profile), Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:27am

    You were going well until the last paragraph. This isn’t an unknown film at all. It was nominated for an Academy Award, and fairly well publicised across Europe on its release.

    It’s fair to say that these parodies have helped sustain it’s popularity beyond the expected timeframe, but it isn’t an unknown film in Europe.

    Having said all that, removing parodies that drive viewers to your film is completely insane.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      icon
      Killer_Tofu (profile), Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:58am

      Re:

      I had never heard of the movie until these parodies.
      I don't pay attention to any of those silly awards on TV because way back when I did, they never gave them to the people I thought deserved em.

      I see that you acknowledge that the takedowns is insane, which I agree with, but this is far from a well known film around my groups.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 7:48am

      Re:

      What is this "Europe" thing you speak of? If it didn't play at my local cineplex, it never happened.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Rob, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:29am

    -1 sale

    I passed at the opportunity to watch Downfall when it was on TV because I didn't like how Hitler looked and the ads didn't exactly portray the movie as one worth watching.

    Having watched a few funny clips of him recently, I had already changed my mind and was going to buy a copy of Downfall.

    Now they're being assholes about it, I don't think I'll bother.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    known coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:37am

    make that -2 sales

    My favorite was the Death of Michael Jackson. It was the first one i saw, and i did not know others had been made before. I thought it was brilliant. Oh well now i will just think of the producer as yet another

    poo poo head. but a much worse one than Mr. Masnick or Mr. D. Helmet.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    bob, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:37am

    Hummm

    Are the original clips of hitler in the public domain?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    known coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 6:45am

    The Streisand effect works in many ways

    One thing I find interesting is that the Streisand effect can give and the Streisand effect can take away. The you tube video’s brought attention to the movie and make folks think about it and maybe seeing it again or for the first time.

    Now the effect is going to be what an asshole this guy is and how he try’s to squash the little guy who is trying to have some fun. So I will not give him money to see his movie.

    Maybe one of the positives of the internet age is the greater roll of the feedback “of the masses”

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 7:02am

    I really want to see the movie now.

    I've watched about 5-6 of the parodies and laughed my head off at... some of them. Anyway, now I have to see the actual movie. Seeing those clips and that performance and how much attention the movie is getting, makes me want to go watch it. If it's good enough, I'll be buying the DVD for my father-in-law who really likes WWII movies.

    That said, before the parodies I didn't even know this movie existed. If I'd seen the preview of that part, I would've figured it to be like any other movie and not given a crap about it.

    Question for anyone who's seen the movie.
    Is the movie:
    a) really that good?
    b) factually correct or at least as close as they can get?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      AC & Your Sunshine's Banned, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 6:21pm

      Re: I really want to see the movie now.

      "Question for anyone who's seen the movie.
      Is the movie:
      a) really that good?
      b) factually correct or at least as close as they can get?"

      You should just buy it for your Dad-in-law; "Downfall" is an AWESOME movie!

      I can't imagine a WWII film more plausably realistic, especially heard in DTS on a decent surround sound system.

      Mind-blowing!

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      mystery man, Jan 14th, 2011 @ 11:53am

      date

      do you wAnt to go out with the sexy beast me

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    Brian (profile), Apr 21st, 2010 @ 7:08am

    Original movie still on Youtube

    If you do a search on youtube you can find the ENTIRE movie on there, divided up into several parts of course. All of them are still up and going without a single DMCA yet they do a takedown of the parodies!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 7:12am

      Re: Original movie still on Youtube

      If the movie is good enough, I'll pay to rent or buy it to support the producer, movie crew, actors, etc. I don't mind it if the movie is good. I'd rather sit through the movie and enjoy it rather than worry about clicking on clips of the movie strung together.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      •  
        icon
        Brian (profile), Apr 21st, 2010 @ 7:29am

        Re: Re: Original movie still on Youtube

        What I said had nothing to do with buying it, its the fact the entire movie is left up completely untouched by DMCA takedown notices yet simple parodies are being pulled down left and right.

         

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    Richard (profile), Apr 21st, 2010 @ 7:37am

    Irony

    Now strictly speaking parody is only fair use if you are parodying the work itself or its creators. Using somebody else's work to parody a 3rd party doesn't count.
    So when this video was created it (strictly) wasn't fair use and therefore the takedown is OK.

    However once the takedown is issued the producers of the original film become the object of the parody and so it becomes fair use. Thus this DMCA takedown invalidates itself.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 8:15am

    (cries over the death of free speech)

    Priceless!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 9:14am

    Wow...

    Hey... I would never have known about the movie and subsequently rented it. What the fuck is wrong with companies?! Why can't they see that this is some of the best (and free) advertisements?!?!?!

    It was a good movie... too bad they are trying to kill it.

    Dumb asses.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 9:33am

    You are incorrect Richard, the movie itself is parodied as well as whatever their target is.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    ShellMG, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 11:33am

    The Striesand Effect BIG Time

    Say what you will about Rush Limbaugh, but he discussed this story today and his comments were a mirror image of Techdirt comments. He also added that he doesn't rent DVDs he BUYS them, and seeing the parodies on YouTube caused him to purchase the movie and watch it. He added he never would've known about the film -- which he liked and thought it was very good -- if it hadn't been for the parodies.

    So his mike just reached millions of listeners.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Fester Bestertester, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 1:36pm

    Well, that's why I bought the DVD.

    I saw a few of the parodies - and then bought the DVD. I doubt I would have done so otherwise. It's not heavily advertised, and I didn't see it during its relatively short and limited tenure in the theater.

    Anyway, it's too late to close the barn doors on this one. This clip has attained almost iconic status - people who don't know anything about the movie, never mind the events it portrays know all about "The Hitler Rant".

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    vyvyan, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 3:19pm

    Constantin is trying to make (their) Downfall. This time for real.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Kevin Carson, Apr 21st, 2010 @ 11:41pm

    Nice site--be a shame if anything happened to it

    Anonymous Coward 12: A DOS attack against Constantin Films' website would also be illegal, so I'm not encouraging that either.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    Yeebok (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 12:01am

    I think this one is even better :
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kBO5dh9qrIQ

    It's more Hitler having a rant about the takedowns and like many of them, not entirely SFW.
    "Don't worry, he'll realise the irony soon"

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    Steve R. (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 4:36pm

    Convention - Lets get one on!

    I didn't realize that this seems to achieving cult status. We have Star Trek conventions, now we can have a convention based based on these film clips. The best one gets an iron cross or similar symbol. So who will organize the first convention? Just think of all the memorabilia you could sell!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    doubting thomas, Apr 26th, 2010 @ 8:07am

    oh well

    I guess I won't rent the movie, then.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    hendro, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 12:11am

    suing back companies...

    i wonder, whether we (people) can sue the companies back for violating public copyright. i am sick of companies doing whatever they want to people.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    Steve R. (profile), Apr 27th, 2010 @ 5:43am

    New York Times Article

    New York Times Article. Poorly written, but at least it is a recognition, in the Times, that DMCA can be used in an abusive manner. Gasp! They even reached out to quote TechDirt. Amazing to see a New York Times article that even acknowledges the existence of those opposed to so-called "intellectual property".

    Twitter, DMCA Take-Downs & the Prior Restraint of First Amendment Speech

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    the downfall of intelligence, May 3rd, 2010 @ 6:23pm

    big in europe... and... ?

    seriously... do you think the majority of americans give a flying flip about something that's "big in europe" ...seriously... u think the people who think of david hasslehoff as a "great musician" really matter to your average american (not saying much, i know...) to whom hip hop, lady gaga, kanye west, et al are philosophical geniuses and popular icons? pull your head back into the sunshine my friend.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Lur, May 28th, 2010 @ 9:36pm

    Downfall? I thought till i read this it was from inglorious bastards.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    David Robert Lewis, Jul 1st, 2010 @ 1:38pm

    As one of the people affected by the takedown notice would appreciate advice on how to go about filing a dispute.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    bh, Oct 27th, 2010 @ 6:41am

    hello

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    big tiny, Oct 27th, 2010 @ 6:43am

    hey daniel

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Kevin, Oct 27th, 2010 @ 6:44am

    come to soggy buds

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    big tiny, Oct 27th, 2010 @ 6:45am

    that place is disgusting

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Elder, Oct 27th, 2010 @ 6:46am

    hey tyler

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    big tiny, Oct 27th, 2010 @ 6:47am

    buddy

    buddy is funny

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Dylan Manning, Oct 27th, 2010 @ 6:48am

    mating call

    I'm a dumbass

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    big tiny, Oct 27th, 2010 @ 6:49am

    i know

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 27th, 2010 @ 6:50am

    Buddy farts alot

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Junior Parent, Oct 27th, 2010 @ 6:51am

    I want to do everyone

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    kevin, Oct 27th, 2010 @ 6:57am

    me

    im sexy

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    big tiny, Oct 27th, 2010 @ 7:15am

    i hate pie

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    big tiny, Oct 27th, 2010 @ 7:16am

    halloween soon

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    big tiny, Oct 29th, 2010 @ 6:20am

    i was here

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    hitman, Oct 29th, 2010 @ 6:20am

    hey big tiny

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    hitman, Oct 29th, 2010 @ 6:22am

    hey big tiny

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    big tiny, Nov 8th, 2010 @ 11:44am

    cameron is weird

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    bit tiny, Nov 12th, 2010 @ 3:20pm

    dimitri farted

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    lrobbo (profile), May 30th, 2012 @ 12:40pm

    Hitler parodies still going strong in 2012 . . . long may they thrive!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
A word from our sponsors...
Essential Reading
Techdirt Reading List
Techdirt Insider Chat
A word from our sponsors...
Recent Stories
A word from our sponsors...

Close

Email This