Judge Tosses Universal Music Suit Against Veoh; Safe Harbors & Common Sense Prevail

from the google-should-be-happy dept

In a ruling that has to make the folks at Google/YouTube happy (despite not being a part of the case), a judge has granted summary judgment to Veoh over Universal Music, claiming that Veoh's video hosting site is protecting from liability of infringing videos due to the DMCA's safe harbors. This case, which has many similarities to Viacom's lawsuit against YouTube, has gone against Universal Music in almost every way. This is now the second time that Veoh has had such a lawsuit dismissed, and hopefully the judge in the YouTube case recognizes that this is, in fact, the right decision under the DMCA. This latest ruling isn't a huge surprise. Earlier this year, the judge seemed to reject all of Universal's arguments for why safe harbors shouldn't apply. Universal also got smacked down (twice) in its attempt to separately sue Veoh's investors for the actions of the company's users.

While Veoh, as a company, may be struggling, this is a huge victory for common sense. This case describes exactly the sort of situation that the DMCA safe harbors were designed to deal with. A service provider who has no direct say in what content is uploaded by users should not be liable for that content. It's great that judges are seeing this, and hopefully the judge in the YouTube case sees it the same way. Veoh's case isn't "over" yet, though, since Universal will appeal -- and has already claimed the ruling is "wrong." Yet, so far odds of a successful appeal are not looking good. Hopefully, the appeals courts will also correctly interpret safe harbors (and common sense) to recognize that a service provider should never be liable for the content put up by users.

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  • icon
    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), 14 Sep 2009 @ 3:50pm

    For Frak's sake

    Why hasn't google led the charge on this?

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

  • identicon
    Rabbit80, 15 Sep 2009 @ 6:37am

    So - that puts all the torrent sites into the clear then? :D

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

  • icon
    Hephaestus (profile), 15 Sep 2009 @ 6:51am

    Just a simple translation ....

    Universal Music ... "The ruling today is wrong because it runs counter to established precedent and legislative intent and to the express language of the DMCA,"

    translation ... if we loose this we loose the ability to get ISP's to police the internet for us

    "Because of this and our commitment to protecting the rights of our artists and songwriters who deserve to be compensated for the use of their music,"

    translation pt 1 .... we are protecting our profit margins
    translation pt 2 .... save the children, small furry animals, artists, etc

    "we will appeal this ruling immediately."

    translation .... we will continue down this road with the hope that Veoh goes under so we can win by default

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

  • identicon
    TheStupidOne, 16 Sep 2009 @ 8:27am

    Is there some recourse ...

    Can Veoh sue for harassment via lawsuit or something along those lines? When a company tries the same lawsuit multiple times and keeps trying from slightly different angles it begins to look like bullying (even though we understand it was bullying from the beginning) and should be illegal.

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

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