Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick


Filed Under:
dmca, fair use, news channels, takedowns

Companies:
cnn, fox



CNN Follows Fox News In Using DMCA To Take Down Fair Use Videos

from the thin-skinned-much? dept

What is it with cable news channels for being thinskinned the second some bloggers start posting criticism? Earlier this year, Fox News used the DMCA to take down videos that were being used in commentary, and then sought to force the site to waive its fair use rights for future video usage. So, that give liberals a chance to laugh at "conservative" Fox news... but don't laugh too hard, because now there's the flipside. The "liberal" CNN has filed a DMCA notice to have video taken down that was being used by a conservative blog for commentary purposes -- again, almost certainly fair use. Also, it sounds like some of the video footage that CNN demanded be taken down wasn't even filmed by CNN, suggesting they don't hold the copyright on it. Either way, it's quite silly for either news station to file such a notice. In both cases it was clear that the sites in question weren't trying to use the video to "compete" unfairly, but to offer criticism and commentary. The fact that both news channels went the DMCA takedown route, makes it clear that they were simply trying to shut up critics. And, of course, in both cases, it backfired, bringing more attention to the stories (and just how thinskinned) cable news networks appear to be... no matter where they might sit on the political spectrum.

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  1. identicon
    Hulser, 20 Apr 2009 @ 10:48am

    Re: Re: Re:

    It's a ridiculously complex legal analysis and until a court rules one way or the other, you just can't say whether a given use is a fair use or not.

    I disagree. Sure, in order to be familiar with all of the ramifications of fair use and its application, you have to be an expert. But the principles of fair use are rather straight-forward. If this were not the case, then the utility of fair use would be be all but zero. In other words, if what you are saying is right about a "ridiculously complex legal analysis", nobody would take the chance and excersize their fair use rights. You're either right and there's really no such thing as fair use or you're wrong and it's being abused.

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