Back in March, we had written about an absolutely hilarious fake cable ad
by the good folks at Extremely Decent Films
. It's funny, and you can watch it again here...
if you're not in Canada:
Why not in Canada? It appears that YouTube has pulled the video based on a defamation claim
. I confirmed this by logging into a Canadian server on my VPN, and got the following:
This raises all sorts of questions, none of them good. There's nothing defamatory in the video at all. I don't care how ridiculous Canada's defamation laws are (and they are kind of ridiculous), this video isn't defaming anything. It doesn't name a particular cable company, and it's clearly parody anyway. It makes no statements of fact about any particular cable company anyway. Furthermore, it's clearly focused on the US, not Canada (at 24 seconds it shows a map of the US). So, it seems like an interesting question to know who made the defamation claim against the video? Furthermore, this is the first time I've seen that particular error message on a YouTube video (it's usually a copyright claim). I'm curious as to how carefully YouTube reviews the defamation claims and if the counternotice process is the same as with a copyright claim. Either way, it seems like whoever decided to file such a claim on the video basically decided to censor a video because they don't like what it says... and, of course, that's only going to serve to give it that much more attention (yet again).
: YouTube has now reinstated the video, telling us: "Sometimes we make the wrong call. When it's brought to our attention that a video has been removed or blocked mistakenly, we act quickly to reinstate it." It's still not clear who made the original defamation claim, unfortunately.