Copyright As Censorship: Turkey's Prime Minister Copyrights His Recorded Calls To Get Them Off YouTube

from the copyright's-not-about-cenosrship? dept

Just recently, we noted that Turkish Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has tried to shut down social media sites in the past, was once again threatening to ban YouTube and Facebook. The main issue: recordings of some of his phone calls were put online by those opposed to him. Erdogan has supported banning those sites by claiming that the recordings were "fabricated." Of course, it appears he's figured out there's a more modern and efficient way to censor content you don't want people to see: copyright.

Via Ankarali Jan comes the news that Erdogan has "taken out a copyright" in his own phone calls in an attempt to get them removed from those sites. Of course, that more or less admits that the calls are "real" -- though, as some have pointed out, he's never argued that the calls weren't his voice, just that they were edited inaccurately. Still, while more narrowly targeting the calls, rather than banning the whole site, may be seen as a slightly better path, the fact that his tool of choice is copyright should certainly remind us, once again, how frequently copyright is a tool for censorship, rather than having anything to do with its stated purpose.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 14th, 2014 @ 12:49pm

    so how about that line again, that copyright enforcement has nothing to do with censorship?

    I consider that myth totally busted...

     

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  2.  
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    FreeCultureForFreePeople, Mar 14th, 2014 @ 12:54pm

    How can you "take out a copyright on something" when copyright is automatically granted on anything, and you have to make an explicit effort like releasing sth under a Creative Commons license if you want people to share, modify, mix, mash-up your works without infringing your copyright?

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 14th, 2014 @ 12:55pm

    That's some old school copyright right there. A censorship tool in the advent of the printing press.

     

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  4.  
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    Ima Fish (profile), Mar 14th, 2014 @ 12:56pm

    Mike copyright is never used for censorship. Clearly copyright gives the Prime Minister the monopoly right to monetize his phone calls. Someone exercising that natural god given property right should not be accused with such defamatory language. You should be ashamed.

    On a related note, I'm really looking forward to buying CDs of Recep Tayyip Erdogan's phone calls at my local Walmart. Good times.

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 14th, 2014 @ 1:06pm

    It doesn't get anymore crystal clear, than the Turkish Prime Minister scandal.

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 14th, 2014 @ 1:58pm

    And why the hell would Google agree to take them down? Copyright CAN'T be used against political speech, no? Wouldn't that apply here?

     

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  7.  
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    zip, Mar 14th, 2014 @ 1:59pm

    The Church of Scientology has claimed copyright on essentially every internal document ever written or recorded by that organization in its entire history. Every office memo, order, policy, fax, telex, email, surveillance notes, etc. - all copyrighted. (Perhaps even their copies of files they stole from the IRS in the 1970s.)

    Not that it would hold up in court, but claiming copyright (and threatening court action) is a powerful weapon wielded to prevent anyone from publishing embarrassing "smoking gun" documents.

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 14th, 2014 @ 2:09pm

    this guy must have an awful lot of stuff to keep secret!!

     

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  9.  
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    Mason Wheeler (profile), Mar 14th, 2014 @ 3:47pm

    Re:

    That's how it works under US law. Does Turkey have a similar system?

     

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  10.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 14th, 2014 @ 3:49pm

    The Ol' Scientology Defense

    The Scientologists tried this with their stupid Sci-fi self help courses.

    It uh... didn't end well for them. Not at all.

     

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  11.  
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    Lawrence D’Oliveiro, Mar 14th, 2014 @ 10:40pm

    He Can’t Claim Copyright On The Recordings

    Surely copyright belongs to whoever made the recordings (or paid for them). His performance is not copyrightable, copyright only becomes applicable once the performance becomes “fixed in a tangible form” (i.e. a recording).

     

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  12.  
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    Jeffrey Nonken (profile), Mar 15th, 2014 @ 2:29am

    If the posted recordings have been edited, then the works are clearly transformative, and therefore protected under fair use. ;)

     

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  13.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 16th, 2014 @ 5:34am

    I totally did not see this coming

    Yes......sarcasm

    Not funny/funny, more like Grinding teeth/Funny

     

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  14.  
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    KingofthePaupers, Mar 16th, 2014 @ 9:39am

    Jct: Easy to beat copyright! Get into the picture

    Jct: When the CBC Dragons' Den gutted my 15 minute presentation down to 1 minute with my speaking 15 seconds, I sued them, they had to give me a copy of the whole thing. I sat in front of the screen as I played it to become part of the production and making it a new video. That's how to beat this turkey's attempted censorship, just sit in front of the screen as you listen and comment to it! Har har har.

     

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  15.  
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    John Fenderson (profile), Mar 17th, 2014 @ 8:27am

    Re:

    Unless the takedown is challenged, Google does not do any kind of examination of if the copyright claim is legitimate or not. It only determines if the takedown was properly filed.

     

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  16.  
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    mehmet, Mar 17th, 2014 @ 1:01pm

    misleading

    Erdogan copywrited his voice. So if any tries to leak, produce or montage his voice clips, will be taken off

     

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  17.  
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    fere, Jun 14th, 2014 @ 8:40pm

    Re: Copyright Censorship

    Erdogan is a national PUBLIC figure and the principle of FAIR USE would apply and OVERRIDE any considerations.

    US Censorship--

    First it was
    Hate Crimes/ holocost denial antisemitism to shut down exposure of zionist criminality.
    then - National Security
    now its copyright infringement

    all to shut others up and damage management for the Elites in power. Turn their jibes on THEM- mainly "if you're not doing anything wrong, why should you care if you're being spied on?"

    Once the herd caught on to the above scams- TPTB switched to shutting down EVERYTHING they dont like by calling it copyrighted. What a master cloak for murder.

     

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  18.  
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    nilsll, Jun 14th, 2014 @ 8:43pm

    Re:

    WRONG. FAIR USE of a PUBLIC FIGURE allows noncommercial, non-monetary distribution for educationaland research purposes. Check your law books. Been a standard for a century.

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 14th, 2014 @ 8:47pm

    Re:

    they dont have to be edited to be protected under fair use. Editing is NOT a prerequisite of Fair use rights.

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 14th, 2014 @ 8:50pm

    Totally NO legal basis. And wouldnt over ride educational fair use anyway. His only real protection from violation of his voice? Resignation.

     

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


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