Supreme Court Won't Hear Dancing Baby Case... Despite Gov't Admitting 'Serious Legal Error'

from the dancing-without-end dept

Sometimes I think purgatory must be filing a lawsuit over a wrongful DMCA takedown notice. I'm pretty sure that's how Stephanie Lenz feels. After all, she's been fighting against Universal Music issuing a bogus DMCA takedown against her dancing baby, and I'm pretty sure that "baby" will be graduating high school before too long. Last we'd checked in, the Supreme Court was debating hearing the appeal in the case, and had asked the White House to weigh in. The White House responded last month with a truly bizarre argument, agreeing that the 9th Circuit's ruling contained a "significant legal error" but said that this case was "not a suitable vehicle for correcting that mistake."

Whether it was for that reason or for no reason at all, the Supreme Court has now decided not to hear the appeal, meaning that the case is back (once again) in District Court, where it may actually go to trial to determine if Universal Music knew that the video was fair use when it issued the initial takedown.

As we've discussed time and time again, this particular case is an important one, if Section 512(f) of the DMCA -- the part that says you cannot file bogus DMCA takedowns -- is to have any teeth. The problem, right now is that there are piles upon piles of abusive DMCA takedowns, targeting all sorts of content that is perfectly legitimate and non-infringing. Yet, because there is basically no punishment for issuing such takedowns, they continue. Unfortunately, this particular case keeps coming out with "mixed bag" rulings that probably won't help very much in the long term. While we may have hoped that the Supreme Court would clear things up and make sure 512(f) actually does its job, it appears that's unlikely to happen any time soon.


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  1. icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), 20 Jun 2017 @ 8:45am

    Re: Re:

    Ummm because I'm a masochist...
    Where did I suggest killing off the DMCA?
    I'd love to know, because I wrote that post and never said that.

    What I did suggest is penalties for these asshats who compile made up lists & even their clients websites demanding they be delisted because DMCA... Google has to spend a bunch of money sifting these shitty notices and they don't host any of these sites. Rather than send the notice to the actual site, which if its outside the US can tell you to stuff your DMCA notice, they send it to an uninvolved 3rd party and make them pay for that privilege.

    Maybe you missed where they all were trying to sue YouTube into oblivion while at the same time uploading content they controlled & getting paid for it inbetween demanding it be taken down.

    Commercial copyright infringement means nothing anymore to corporations, labels regularly rip off artists and release things they don't have the rights to and the artists can't afford the lawsuit... even if they won huge damages they would all vanish into paying the lawyers. The corp would write off their defense as a cost of doing business.

    Perhaps if you had actually read what I wrote rather than spewing forth your YT hate, your comment might not have been flagged dipshit.

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