Judge Censors Popular Mexican Documentary, Which Critiques Judiciary; Director Then Complains About 'Piracy'

from the funny-how-that-works dept

SinkDeep alerts us to the news that a very popular Mexican documentary, called Presumed Guilty (Presunto Culpable in Spanish) has been censored by the courts, after one person who appears in the movie complained that he never gave permission. The movie itself is a documentary shedding some light on the Mexican judiciary, following the case of the wrongful conviction of Antonio Zuniga for murder, based on flimsy evidence. The complaint came from one of the witnesses in court, who claims he never gave permission to the filmmakers. The filmmakers claim that since he appeared at a public trial there was no need to get permission -- and lots of people, including local and federal government officials are claiming that they disagree with the court's ruling.

Apparently, some are ignoring the order to stop showing the film, and the entire film has shown up on YouTube, where its racking up plenty of views. On top of that, the censorship order has made the movie popular among people selling bootlegs.

Of course, SinkDeep also notes that even with all of this helping the movie get a lot more attention, the producers are complaining about this "piracy." Apparently they've been complaining on Twitter that people shouldn't watch the unauthorized versions, even as they're fighting the courts who have censored the original version. On top of that, this morning, the director successfully issued a takedown to remove the film from YouTube. Of course, this seems like a perfect place where a filmmaker might encourage more people to see a movie, just as it's been censored. It's too bad the reaction is the same typical "but, but, piracy!" reaction.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    icon
    :Lobo Santo (profile), Mar 7th, 2011 @ 2:03pm

    Are you certain

    Are you certain it's not a ploy to get even more publicity?

    Y'know, like "Hey, don't watch my pirated movie! (nudge nudge, wink wink, know what I mean, eh?)"

     

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

  2.  
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    The eejit (profile), Mar 7th, 2011 @ 2:07pm

    Re: Are you certain

    IT would be one of the best psychological ads ever. But sadly, it appears to not be the case.

     

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

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 2:22pm

    This video is no longer available due to a copyright claim by Roberto Hernandez

    Sorry about that. (youtube)

     

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

  4.  
    identicon
    Loonesta, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 2:23pm

    That YouTube version "is no longer available due to a copyright claim by Robert Hernandez".

     

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

  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 2:24pm

    All the publicity in the world (and all the free views) don't mean much if by the time you get things settled in court, you have a product that nobody is going to pay to see anymore because they all saw it already online for free.

    The rights owner should make that choice, not a bunch of basement keyboard warriors.

     

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

  6.  
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    :Lobo Santo (profile), Mar 7th, 2011 @ 2:27pm

    Re:

    Your opinion stated as fact bears some small thought, however it is more an indictment of an ineffectual and amazingly slow legal system.

     

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

  7.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 2:34pm

    Re:

    Doesn't mater if you get it settled in court if no one even knows about the movie afterwards.

     

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

  8. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    xczxcz, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 2:39pm

    xczxczx

    cxzc`zxc`zxc`zxc`xzc`xczc

     

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

  9.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 2:58pm

    Perhaps he has to!

    Is it at all possible that the director is legally obliged due to the court order to take all reasonable steps to prevent the documentary being viewed.

    That could well include issuing DMCA takedown notices, as the courts would "expect" a rights holder to do with infringing material.

    Anyone know if this could be the case

     

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

  10.  
    identicon
    Sinkdeep, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 3:04pm

    Re: Perhaps he has to!

    I honestly doubt the jury (and any jury in Mexico) that issue the order knows what an DMCA is.

    The director seems to know.. he took it down because
    "you cannot do public interest work w/o paying for a team's lunch". lol

    https://twitter.com/#!/porquesmichamba/status/44605934051405824

     

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

  11.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 3:05pm

    Re:

    Tell that to Warren Ellis, whose series FreakAngels is serialized for free online and the books sell well enough AFTERWARDS. And the free online version is still up.

    Then again, don't go near Warren Ellis, he'd eat you alive and play with your remains once he pooped you out.

    As one should.

     

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

  12.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 4:04pm

    Re:

    "The rights owner should make that choice, not a bunch of basement keyboard warriors."

    Well, unfortunately, it is not his choice to make. Anyone minimally knowledgeable is capable of putting a movie up on youtube. There are millions (billions?) of people with that ability. There are hundreds of thousands that are willing to do that. There is demand for it. You'd have more luck trying to stop a tidal wave with a tennis racquet.

     

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

  13.  
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    ltlw0lf (profile), Mar 7th, 2011 @ 4:06pm

    Re:

    you have a product that nobody is going to pay to see anymore because they all saw it already online for free.

    I have several copies of Freedom Downtime that I bought from 2600. This is despite the fact that they made the entire video available free online, and even have a statement on the video saying that they welcomed people to copy and distribute the video. I've purchased many products that were available for free, and I know I am not alone in doing so (2600 has sold a lot of copies of Freedom Downtime.) So, your "nobody will buy because it is available for free" just doesn't seem to really work.

     

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

  14.  
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    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), Mar 7th, 2011 @ 4:30pm

    Same ol'

    Yeah, so it's not really the issue he's worried about, is it?

     

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

  15.  
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    Johndoe, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 4:42pm

    the whole problem..

    The whole copyright issue is just a big fat lie by the Courts, they want to keep the movie out of the citizen's view, since it sheeds incredible lazyness, corruption and incompetence by both the judicial and the police corps.

     

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

  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 6:39pm

    Re: Re: Perhaps he has to!

    and now I've read a bit more I haven't seen anything other than that the judge ordered the authorities to halt the showings in the cinemas.

    Pity, I was hoping there was some sense to the director's DMCA behaviour

     

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

  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 9:10pm

    Re: Re:

    Congrats, you are either an idiot or you are incapable of the basic steps of taking a video from online and burning it to disk.

     

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

  18.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 9:31pm

    Re: Are you certain

    The public is making a mockery out of injustice.

     

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

  19.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 9:36pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    So supporting a content creator that gives his content away for free makes someone an idiot? I suppose you think that giving to charity makes someone an idiot too, right?

     

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

  20.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 9:36pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    (just goes to show the mentality of IP maximists. They are selfish to the core, why should we take them seriously?).

     

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

  21.  
    identicon
    V, Mar 8th, 2011 @ 6:27am

    Funny...

    Funny, since Mexico has no DMCA and therefore has no DMCA takedown notice.

    So, does that mean, a country without appropriate laws can use American laws to stifle free speech?

    Nice!

    I do so enjoy it when American - the supposed beacon of freedom - is used to supress freedom.

    The Chinese could take lessons!

     

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

  22.  
    identicon
    natanya, Oct 6th, 2011 @ 5:52pm

    Censoring is not fair - goes against our freedom of expression. Express yourself the away you want at ArcLight's first-ever Documentary Film Festival for a chance to earn $10,000. https://www.withoutabox.com/03film/03t_fin/03t_fin_fest_01over.php?festival_id=11110

     

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


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