Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick




Telus Latest To Misuse Copyright Law; This Time To Force Union Videos Offline

from the did-they-not-learn dept

Two years ago, the Canadian telco Telus did something quite amazing. It blocked all subscribers of their ISP service from reaching websites that supported employees in a union battle between labor and management at Telus. This is one of the cases that people highlight when they talk about network neutrality. Of course, all this actually did was shine a great big spotlight on how ridiculous Telus was being in its labor dispute. You would have though the company wouldn't make the same sort of mistake twice. However, Michael Geist is reporting that Telus has sent DMCA takedown notices to YouTube on a bunch of videos including union videos that have no Telus copyrighted material. This is clearly a misuse of the law to try to stifle access to these union videos -- though, again, that seems likely to backfire. It's doubly ironic, considering (as Geist points out), Telus has been a vocal critic of notice-and-takedown rules as generating a "voluminous level of automated, illegitimate and time-wasting claims." Well, at least they have experience with that first hand.

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  • identicon
    Morgan, 5 Jun 2007 @ 7:33am

    Points out why neutrality is unnecessary

    This is precisely the kind of thing for the marketplace to work out. Obviously their gambit backfired, and not only did they lose the PR battle, they likely lost customers over the outrage.

    So I still fail to see how telco abuse is somehow going to be a continuing problem. It never works out for them, and it is never permanent, and people can leave their ISP.

    So I wonder what legislative magic bullet will somehow keep this from happening, and have no ill effects no one thought of later.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Jun 2007 @ 8:24am

    In many area's there is only one ISP, especially if you want broadband. So you can't leave.

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

  • identicon
    Kyros, 5 Jun 2007 @ 8:32am

    Sad. I can't find the videos, but maybe it'll have a streisand effect and help to get out the unions message?

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

  • identicon
    Unions need to DIE!, 5 Jun 2007 @ 8:37am

    Way to go!

    It is time to dismantle all unions. It must be done now to allow all to have a future!

    VIVA LA REVOLUCION!

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

    • identicon
      haywood, 5 Jun 2007 @ 9:40am

      Re:

      I have mixed feelings about unions. They are kind of like the Army, really needed when you have a legitimate problem, useless & perhaps dangerous to have around the rest of the time. This coming from a retired Teamster.

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

  • identicon
    James, 5 Jun 2007 @ 8:38am

    Hmmmm...

    ..maybe instead of a stupid union the employees should all just quit and go elsewhere. Lets see them run a stupid company w/o employees.

    I find this companies actions deplorable, yet I find unions dispicable. Go figure.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous of Course, 5 Jun 2007 @ 8:40am

    Bogus DMCA claims

    What recourse does the union or the
    owners of the videos have concerning
    the bogus DMCA requests? Is Telus
    commiting fraud?

    Hopefully YouTube will tell them to
    pound sand but it seems the default
    position is to just take down the
    video and avoid problems (for them.)
    Which is understandable.

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

    • identicon
      badfrog, 5 Jun 2007 @ 9:12am

      Re: Bogus DMCA claims

      Knowingly filing a bogus DMCA takedown request is perjury, though AFAIK no one has attempted to make that stick yet.

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

      • identicon
        DCX2, 5 Jun 2007 @ 11:43am

        Re: Re: Bogus DMCA claims

        Telus is a Canadian ISP. Do they even have the right to issue a DMCA request? If they do, and it's filed wrongfully, can they even be counter-notified, seeing as how they reside outside of US jurisdiction?

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

  • identicon
    crucible, 5 Jun 2007 @ 10:07am

    Telus Latest To Misuse Copyright Law

    This is so skanky! I don't have any great love for unions but I despise abuse of power even more. My cell service is with these people but happily not for long.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Jun 2007 @ 12:00pm

    Knowing the Telus union intimately I have to say you don't want to hear their message. When BCTel joined Telus they brought with them everything that was wrong.

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

  • identicon
    Not Darren, 21 Jul 2008 @ 3:18pm

    Telus Idol...er idle.

    This is just Telus being Telus.

    The only thing more arrogant than the way they treat the Union is the way the employees treat the public who disagree with the company.

    Much like people who "drink the Kool Aid", these guys find anyone who doesn't like Telus and dares to blog or post about it and insult them.

    Do or don't do business with them. Telus enjoys the monopoly they purchased from AGT in Alberta, and some people literally have no other choice.

    But you can pick any one of many reasons, their Telus Idol fiasco, hiring goons to stalk Union members and attack them (you can read about that online as well), or their 2.95 "access fee" (ironically from the company behind Koodo mobile which pitches itself as against this garbage), their part in the 15 cent text message cash grab, I mean really...is there any end?

    Ultimately, though, their competition also sends Canadian jobs overseas, and does any one of a number of things that would make a normal person want to puke.

    Deal with the devil or save up millions and start up your own company. I share the mattress with the devil on this one. Everyone sucks, everyone's dirty, put on your big girl panties.

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


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