Viacom Says That By Letting People View Videos On Phones, YouTube Loses DMCA Safe Harbors

from the crazy-talk dept

We've seen how the legacy entertainment industry is trying, desperately, to undo the DMCA's safe harbors, in an attempt to force internet companies to effectively kill off user-generated content. Let's be honest here, the goal is to turn the internet more into TV, so there's less competition for the legacy players, and then they can retain their gatekeeper role. Viacom has been at the forefront of this, making some rather crazy claims regarding the DMCA's safe harbors. In the ongoing case between Viacom and YouTube, the court asked both sides to comment further on the "red flag" provisions in the DMCA.

This is the crux of the fight here, and the real problem is that (surprise, surprise) the drafters of the DMCA didn't fully understand what they were drafting, and drafted parts of the law such that they could be read in conflict. The key points are that the DMCA safe harbors require expeditious takedown of content on receipt of a valid notice of infringement. The rules for a valid notice are pretty clear, and courts have said that invalid notices do not, then, create a burden to remove content. At the same time, there is a part of the bill that says you can lose safe harbors if there are "red flags" -- that the operator knew of infringing activities on the site. So the entertainment industry's argument is that if you are aware that there's infringement on your site, you lose your safe harbors. That, of course, makes no sense. The only way to read the law such that the two sections are consistent is to read it the way YouTube reads it: if you are aware of specific infringement, rather than just general infringement, then you need to do something. That makes sense.

The problem is that Viacom execs live in a world of denial, where they pretend that it's obvious what's infringing and what's not. Thus, to Viacom, YouTube obviously knew what was infringing and what wasn't... even though Viacom itself falsely reported hundreds of videos as infringing... even though they were not.

In filing the response to the court's questions, however, Viacom takes this argument even further. Showing off its technological cluelessness, it argues that the mere act of YouTube setting up an API that allows YouTube videos to show on mobile phones and tablets outside of the browser, means that YouTube loses its safe harbors.
YouTube’s argument that its syndication must be protected because it merely "makes videos accessible" proves far too much. YT Ltr. 8. Any propagation of user-uploaded copyrighted material increases accessibility in some sense. If the DMCA immunized any act of infringement that increases access, an operator could keep the safe harbor merely by showing that its infringement enabled others to view the work, notwithstanding copyright law’s grant of exclusive rights to the copyright holder. This is why Congress limited the safe harbor to acts of infringement that occur "by reason of storage at the direction of the user."
To say that this is stretching the law to ridiculous levels would be an understatement. Effectively, what Viacom is arguing is that if someone uploads a video to YouTube, they only intend to let people watch it via the web. And the idea that YouTube might make such works available on mobile devices somehow goes against the wishes of its users, and shows YouTube making active decisions for the distribution of content. That's insane. And technologically clueless. All YouTube has done is optimize the content for the device viewing it. That's it. People uploading videos to YouTube do so because they want those videos to be seen. They are platform agnostic. Viacom's desperation to break the safe harbors of the DMCA here are really quite crazy, since Viacom itself relies on such safe harbors too -- and is putting its own business at risk out of some sort of quixotic obsession with YouTube.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    icon
    Jay (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:18pm

    What is Viacom's model?

    If you can't buy it, break it.

    If you can't break it, sue it.

    If you can't sue it, destroy it.

    I just find it odd how this is looking more and more like a witch hunt for piracy than someone actually interested in making content available for consumers.

     

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

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:20pm

      Re: What is Viacom's model?

       

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

      •  
        icon
        weneedhelp (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:24pm

        Re: Re: What is Viacom's model?

        Debbie Harry? Really? Another ancient get off my lawn hasbeen.

        Great example AC. /sarc

         

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

      •  
        icon
        weneedhelp (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:27pm

        Re: Re: What is Viacom's model?

        And to prove the old hag has lost it she says:

        "I remember when vinyl was corrupted by cassettes and the whole industry went crazy thinking nobody would sell any records, so it's really been heading this way for quite some time."

        Flipping out of her mind. Because cassettes and CD's killed the industry, oh woe is her.

         

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

        •  
          icon
          Bergman (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 4:20pm

          Re: Re: Re: What is Viacom's model?

          So...in a way, we're dealing with a Zombie Apocalypse here, because cassettes killed the recording industry, and now they're undead?

           

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

          •  
            identicon
            Michael, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 4:39pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: What is Viacom's model?

            Yeah, that might explain it.

            'The Great Firewall of America' is on its way, coutresy of greedy corporate interests and our government selling out to the highest bidder.

             

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

      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:32pm

        Re: Re: What is Viacom's model?

        Debbie does Hollywood LoL
        I can only wish that the statements that Blondie there said come true someday.

        When the music industry is truly ruined, I promise to party until dawn.

         

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

        •  
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:53pm

          Re: Re: Re: What is Viacom's model?

          Thanks for contributing to getting SOPA passed.

           

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

        •  
          identicon
          Elys, Nov 11th, 2011 @ 6:05am

          Re: Re: Re: What is Viacom's model?

          I couldn't agree more. May I join you at that party? What ruined the industry has more to do with clueless music execs ignoring the future of music and how to exploit it along with the further reduction in true artist development, allowing a load of cocaine-snorting studio owners to throw together 'acts' of questionable talent and create songs built on nothing more than a synth or drum loop. The day lip-synching live acts became the norm spelled the end of the traditional industry. Die, record companies, die. The sooner the better.
          And really, Debbie, you had your day and you had one good album, so please stop whining.

           

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

    •  
      identicon
      anonymous, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:55pm

      Re: What is Viacom's model?

      more like a single-minded witch hunt against youtube! what do you think would happen if Viacom was successful in shutting down YouTube? i bet there would be another 'YouTube', run by Viacom! a large case of jealousy going on here, methinks!

       

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

      •  
        identicon
        Michael, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 4:02pm

        Re: Re: What is Viacom's model?

        Well, if the big corps were to run a video service like YouTube, it would be a pay service complete with 24/7 monitoring and filtering. There would be something in the terms of service whereby posting a video would mean conceding complete ownership and control to them.

         

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

  •  
    icon
    weneedhelp (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:20pm

    "it argues that the mere act of YouTube setting up an API that allows YouTube videos to show on mobile phones and tablets outside of the browser, means that YouTube loses its safe harbors."

    Every Viacom's exec's VCR's flash 12:00.

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    notovny., Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:24pm

    I routinely run across YouYube videos for which mobile viewing is disabled. If someone doesn't want their videos shown on mobile devices, the option exists.

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:29pm

    And I can still pirate HULU that is just priceless.

     

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

  •  
    icon
    jupiterkansas (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:40pm

    It makes sense to Viacom because they view phones, pads, laptops, computers, portable players, home theatres, etc. as separate businesses where the customer must purchase media for each device.

    Obviously Youtube is taking content from one of their businesses (website) and hosting it in another format (phone) so it's infringement all around.

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:45pm

    I can't believe they are equating this

    This one's a huge stretch:

    Finally, YouTube’s construction of the red-flag provision denies it practical effect and meaning. Though the infringing character of a particular clip could, in theory, be “obvious,” yet not subjectively “known,” in practice subjective knowledge is most often proved by demonstrating a fact’s obviousness to a reasonable person. See Hope v. Pelzer, 536 U.S. 730, 738 (2002) (inferring officers’ subjective deliberate indifference “from the fact that the risk of harm is obvious”).

    It's one thing to say that a reasonable person can determine that chaining someone to a hitching post for 7 hours in the sun without bathroom breaks and little water is harmful (i.e. the Hope v. Pelzer case). It's quite another to say that a reasonable person could determine whether a clip is in fact infringing by looking at it.

     

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

    •  
      icon
      Bergman (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 4:26pm

      Re: I can't believe they are equating this

      It depends.

      It's not much of a stretch to assume that the teenage girl lip synching in her bedroom to Pink Floyd isn't David Gilmour. Such a video posted to YouTube could possibly have permission from the band, but a reasonable person would find it unlikely.

      On the other hand, I hear stories all the time about how Walmart tells people they can't print copies of photographs they themselves took, because they look "too professional" or are in black & white.

       

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

      •  
        icon
        Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 5:07pm

        Re: Re: I can't believe they are equating this

        On the other hand, I hear stories all the time about how Walmart tells people they can't print copies of photographs they themselves took, because they look "too professional" or are in black & white.

        That's extensive CYA on Walmart's part. As the largest retailer in the US, it's got a big target (but not an actual Target, which is a bit different) painted on them at all times. If some copyrighted photos are reprinted, the rights holder is likely going to sue Walmart rather than the actual infringer. And it's not as if Walmart is willing to leave that decision to the "professionals" in its photo labs. The simplest solution is to erase the possibility of a judgement call.

        It's often a solution that plays out badly via word of mouth for Walmart but I imagine it views the alternative (read: threat of a large lawsuit) to be even worse. With the ready availability of cheap, high MP cameras and cheap (even free) high quality photo editing software, thousands of amateur photographers are going to find themselves unable to reproduce their own photos. There's nothing quite like a collision of high tech and litigious culture.

         

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

        •  
          identicon
          You know who, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 7:12pm

          Re: Re: Re: I can't believe they are equating this

          "As the largest retailer in the US, it's got a big target™
          (but not an actual Target™
          , which is a bit different)"

          And G forbid if they ever used any kind of target™
          , that would get them sued for trademark.

           

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

      •  
        identicon
        IronM@sk, Nov 11th, 2011 @ 5:20am

        Re: Re: I can't believe they are equating this

        You want an example of the chilling effects of bad copyright law? Look no further.

         

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

  •  
    identicon
    Michael, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:46pm

    Corporate power grab gone wild

    It's blatantly obvious that these corporations want to remake the internet in their own image and control all of it just like they do with mass media outlets.

     

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

  •  
    icon
    Mike42 (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:47pm

    I guess you guys are better than me. I can't get any sense out of that last run-on sentence. I think someone forgot their dementia meds.

     

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

    •  
      identicon
      Michael, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:52pm

      Re:

      My comment goes to the very heart of the problem. Don't like it? Go to Washington and pay off some suits just like the others. Maybe that way you can come back here and remove some "infringing opinions."

      BTW, does every sentence you write begin by addressing yourself?

       

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

    •  
      icon
      A Guy (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:11pm

      Re:

      He's basically saying users only directed their videos to be put up on youtube. If youtube takes those videos and does something else with them, like putting them on a mobile phone, it takes the burden from the user and shifts it to youtube.

      That, of course, is crazy.

      First, mobile phones with data plans are part of the internet too so it's not doing anything substantively different with the video.

      Second, the users directed youtube to use their videos in terms governed by the EULA. If sending it to a mobile device is in the EULA in some way, then it is still at the direction of its users and they should still qualify for a safe harbor.

      It took me about four reads too.

       

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

      •  
        icon
        A Guy (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:14pm

        Re: Re:

        I'm talking about the legalese quote of course. Mike's analysis was perfectly clear.

         

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

        •  
          identicon
          Michael, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:20pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          You're correct. Viacom's farce of a case against YouTube can be summarized as follows:

          1) YouTube operates on the internet
          2) Mobile phones with internet capability can access it
          Therefore, YouTube is guilty of copyright infringement.

           

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

          •  
            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:51pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: If it's on the Internet... you must not acquit !!!

            If it's on the Internet... you must not acquit !!!

            That pretty much sums up their understanding (now if they can just bribe/convince/buy some judges into their way of thinking)....

             

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:58pm

    Add her dumb ass to the list of musicians I boycott. As if I would ever listen to her crap anyway. Yet another fossil that has no clue in Internet-age, towing the company line.

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Prisoner 201, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:58pm

    Is it just me or does most cases today seem like brute-force attacks on the legal system?

    Try every permutation of laws, concepts and words until you find the combination that breaks open the system.

    Pay no attention to if it makes sense, thats not the target here - winning is. To lawyers there is no cheating, no right or wrong, just or unjust, there is only winning or losing.

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 2:59pm

    Grokster?

    Indeed, on YouTube’s view, Grokster itself could resurface as a “storage” site, allow users to post copyrighted music throughout its system for public consumption, avoid knowledge of the specific location of particular pirated music files, and respond to takedown no-tices, with complete immunity from copyright infringement liability under the DMCA.

    Yes, it could resurface. It was the inducement that got Grokster in trouble, not the fact that some people used it for their own copyright infringement.

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    out_of_the_blue, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:00pm

    Oh, you routinely say legislators don't know what they're signing.

    So you can't just reverse it: "drafters of the DMCA didn't fully understand" when suits your argument.

    'This is why Congress limited the safe harbor to acts of infringement that occur "by reason of storage at the direction of the user." '

    HMM. That says manipulation (formatting) by Youtube removes safe harbor, because it's NOT as uploaded. Looks a good hook to hang a case on. Hope it succeeds.

    "They [videos] are platform agnostic." -- Nope. Require specific software in the browser. Because of recent Youtube changes with no other obvious purpose, I can't use certain stand-alone software (that had been working) to download Youtube videos. In fact, Youtube wants to force one to view ads. It not only complains that my browser is outdated, but forces me to allow javascript. So, NO, it's NOT "platform agnostic", you're blatantly wrong again.

     

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

    •  
      icon
      The eejit (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:08pm

      Re: Oh, you routinely say legislators don't know what they're signing.

      IF that's the case, then technically, every single label-run website is infringing, due to the same modification to MP3 to play the copyrighted works.

       

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

    •  
      icon
      TimothyAWiseman (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:20pm

      Re: Oh, you routinely say legislators don't know what they're signing.

      ""They [videos] are platform agnostic." -- Nope. Require specific software in the browser."

      I think that "they" refers to the people uploading the videos, not YouTube itself, though the sentence is somewhat ambiguous.

      Even YouTube itself is platform agnostic in the sense that it checks for certain features, not specific platforms. I will never be able to view YouTube on my programmable TI-83 calculator since it doesn't support the needed features. But I can view YouTube regardless of using Windows, Linux, FreeBSD, Android, IOS, etc regardless of whether I am using FireFox, IE, Chrome, or Opera.

      If someone comes out with a whole new OS and a whole new Browser tomorrow, Youtube would work as long as that combination implemented all required features. That fits "platform agnostic" as it is generally used when talking about computer technologies.

       

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

      •  
        identicon
        Ron, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 5:14pm

        Re: Re: Oh, you routinely say legislators don't know what they're signing.

        Nice smack down on OOTB. He thinks he is smarter than everyone and posts here to try and make himself look smart.

         

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

    •  
      icon
      nasch (profile), Nov 14th, 2011 @ 8:42am

      Re: Oh, you routinely say legislators don't know what they're signing.

      Hope it succeeds.

      Wow.

       

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:08pm

    This is interesting

    Section 512(c)(1)(A)(iii) does not unequivocally command the service provider to “expeditiously remove ‘the material,’” YT Ltr. 4, but requires that it “ act[] expeditiously to remove . . . the material.” Expeditious action toward the goal of removal is not the same as expeditious removal. Congress’s phrasing recognizes that there will be circumstances when the provider must take intermediate actions toward the ultimate end of removal. And where a service provider cannot reasonably be expected to locate and remove all infringing material, Congress’s formulation would preserve the safe harbor for the provider that swiftly takes reasonable action toward that end, even if it is not achieved in full.

    So, supposing Youtube had general knowledge of infringement, in what way are the tools youtube provides to content owners ( http://www.youtube.com/t/copyright_owners ) not sufficient intermediary steps?

     

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

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 5:28pm

      Re: This is interesting

      I think they are sufficient now (even Viacom says YT is doing things right since 2008). But this case is about YouTube as it existed a few years ago.

       

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

  •  
    identicon
    Michael, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:08pm

    Just because something's "platform agnostic," that doesn't necessarily mean that it doesn't require that some piece of software be installed in order to function. It just means that, yes, it's possible to use it on online-capable machines besides a PC.

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:09pm

    "Let's be honest here, the goal is to turn the internet more into TV, so there's less competition for the legacy players"

    Hit the nail on the head there. Draconian copyright enforcement is one piece of it and repealing net neutrality is another. By the way, how did that net neutrality vote go the other day?

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:16pm

    YouTube's argument blah syndication blah protected because blah blah videos accessible blah blah blah. Blah blah user-uploaded copyrighted material blah blah blah. If the DMCA blah blah infringement blah, blah blah blah safe harbor blah blah blah infringement blah blah blah, blah copyright law blah blah blah. Blah Congress blah safe harbor blah infringement blah blah blah.

    Was there actually a part about phones in there? That paragraph is so full of lawyer I can barely read it.

     

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

    •  
      identicon
      Digitari, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 4:36pm

      Re:

      "Was there actually a part about phones in there? That paragraph is so full of lawyer I can barely read it."


      My spouse looked at my monitor and fix that for you

      Was there actually a part about phones in there? That paragraph is so full of fuckery I can barely read it.

       

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:32pm

    1984 Analogy

    I recorded some movie with my VCR.

    I gave the tape to my friend.

    I didn't know it could play on his VCR.

    MAFIAA is now suing the VCR company for contributory infringment.

    Fucking magnets, How do they work?

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Michael, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 3:40pm

    They would copyright the entire universe if they could. Of course we'd all have to pay to live in it.

     

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

  •  
    icon
    Archer0911 (profile), Nov 10th, 2011 @ 5:48pm

    clearly clueless execs...

    FTS: "Effectively, what Viacom is arguing is that if someone uploads a video to YouTube, they only intend to let people watch it via the web".

    clearly the execs don't realize that phones can browse the web. While YouTube may've made an API specifically for phone use, I can still get on my phone browser and watch youtube videos without the app. And even the app uses the internet.

    Even if Viacom's assumptions about the intents of youtube uploaders is true, the videos are STILL being watched via the web.

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 6:06pm

    "The only way to read the law such that the two sections are consistent is to read it the way YouTube reads it: if you are aware of specific infringement, rather than just general infringement, then you need to do something. That makes sense. "

    It seems very arrogant to say "this is the only way to read the law", because that is just not true. You can read the law the other way as well: They can be made aware of specific infringing, and if they are notified often enough, they should be away that their site is being used for infringment, thus setting the red flag condition.

    It doesn't have to be specific to be true.

     

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

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 6:35pm

      Re:

      Uh, no, you can't read it that way. Unless the law specifically states that preventative measures must be taken, rather than reactive, then they don't need to be taken.

      People say the law is ambiguous, but you still can't create rules that aren't explicitly stated.

       

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

      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 6:56pm

        Re: Re:

        Why can't you read it that way? It seems arrogant that clauses that are not specifically joined should be somehow joined. If they intended them to be joined in a certain manner, they would have spelled it out. They did not.

        My comment is mostly that Mike is very arrogant to assume there is only one way to read the law. That is up to a judge, not some arrogant and fixated "tech" writer.

         

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

        •  
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 9:01pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          My comment is mostly that Mike is very arrogant to assume there is only one way to read the law. That is up to a judge, not some arrogant and fixated "tech" writer.

          And some judges interpret it differently than Mike:
          In order to obtain safe harbor, a defendant cannot have knowledge of ongoing infringing activities. This “knowledge” standard is defined as “actual knowledge” or “willful ignorance.” According to the widely-cited House and Senate Report on the law, “if the service provider becomes aware of a ‘red flag’ from which infringing activity is apparent, it will lose the limitation of liability if it takes no action.” H.R. Rep. 105-551(II), at 53; see also Perfect 10, Inc. v. CCBill LLC, 488 F.3d 1102, 1114 (9th Cir.2007). The Congressional Report notes that the service provider is only liable if it “turned a blind eye to ‘red flags' of obvious infringement.” H.R. Rep. 105-551(II), at 57.
          Columbia Pictures v. Fung, 2009 WL 6355911 (C.D. Cal. Dec. 21, 2009).

          The text of the DMCA is clear. A service provider maintains its safe harbor if it:
          (i) does not have actual knowledge that the material or an activity using the material on the system or network is infringing; [or]

          (ii) in the absence of such actual knowledge, is not aware of facts or circumstances from which infringing activity is apparent
          It's clear from the text of the statute that if you see obviously infringing activity and do nothing, you lose your safe harbor. This standard is less than actual knowledge of specific infringement, but more than general knowledge. Mike likes to pretend this doesn't exist, but he can't deny what the statute says.

           

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

          •  
            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2011 @ 3:39am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Thanks, that is a very good example. YouTube I think has managed to avoid this red flag situation by taking some proactive steps to stop infringement in some ways, such as blocking out longer clips, and having certain things filtered out up front. Yet at the same time, those very actions suggest that they are aware of facts or circumstances from while infringing activity is apparent.

            You only have to go search for a song name and lyrics to get videos with the copyrighted song and the lyrics scrolling. Sometimes with the music video, sometimes without. Unless specifically provided by the rights holder, those would be pretty obviously infringing.

            The move on SOPA is in some ways to clear up the situation, to make moot certain types of protections that "media grifters" have been working with. It will certainly be a big change for some of them.

             

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

            •  
              icon
              The eejit (profile), Nov 11th, 2011 @ 4:00am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              But when even Viacom cannot tell authorised from infringing, you have a major issue. This is an actual fact that has come up numerous times.

               

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

          •  
            identicon
            Prisoner 201, Nov 11th, 2011 @ 4:20am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            That the upload has a title that sounds like it could be a band is not enough. Plenty of bands market themselves through YouTube, or approve of fan made content.

            How is it apparent that this is not a case for a specific upload? How do you instantly know that it is infringing and not approved?

            And how would you create an automated system to do that?

            Or should we stop the digital revolution and go back to lots and lots of manpower? Or just stop using the internet to its full potential? What is more important, progress of the human race or legacy gatekeeper industries?

             

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

  •  
    identicon
    Rekrul, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 9:26pm

    Viacom just wants to drag things out long enough for PROTECT IP and SOPA to pass and then it will use those to simply shut down YouTube completely.

     

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

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Nov 10th, 2011 @ 11:58pm

      Response to: Rekrul on Nov 10th, 2011 @ 9:26pm

      Nuke the system. It's the only way to be sure.

      Also, I think it's time to eliminate megacorporate influence in politics.

       

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

      •  
        identicon
        Prisoner 201, Nov 11th, 2011 @ 6:05am

        Re: Response to: Rekrul on Nov 10th, 2011 @ 9:26pm

        "Also, I think it's time to eliminate megacorporate influence in politics."

        If we don't, really soon megacorps are going to be the government.

        As hard as it may be to give up my childhood dream of living out Neuromancer, I think I prefer democracy.

         

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

      •  
        identicon
        Rekrul, Nov 11th, 2011 @ 10:09pm

        Re: Response to: Rekrul on Nov 10th, 2011 @ 9:26pm

        Nuke the system. It's the only way to be sure.

        I hope you got James Cameron's permission before paraphrasing his dialog!

         

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

  •  
    identicon
    frosty840, Nov 11th, 2011 @ 4:39am

    Nice to pin down an AC...

    I've been noticing one of the paid-shill Anonymous Cowards going on about the DMCA safe harbours for the past few days.
    It's nice to be able to pin down their parent company as Viacom.

    Now we just have to work out who's paying for the violent-psycho-loon-ACs...

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2011 @ 6:28am

    Quick, someone form a band called "The", "A", or some other ridiculously common English word or phrase, and do the same for songs. (Actually, you might not even need to have a song. Some noise will be enough for the purpose of this exercise.)

    Then upload it somewhere, and send takedown requests to every website that uses the English language.

     

    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