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  • Aug 14, 2014 @ 12:19am

    So an entire country's internet went through one router?

  • Dec 12, 2013 @ 10:24am

    Well this is disappointing. I'm a lawyer and copyright activist running the website, designed to help people dispute false copyright claims on their videos. For a long time now MCNs have been immune to Content ID claims, and I've actually been advising people who are constantly badgered by false Content ID claims to join an MCN as a refuge from this. This is especially critical in the case of Content ID claims by Universal Music Group, which has a special deal with YouTube making their claims immune to DMCA counter-notices.

    With all other claimants, if you go through the whole dispute > appeal > counter-notice process, you can eventually clear your video of false copyright claims. But when UMG claims a video, it is impossible to ever clear the copyright claim, because once you get to the counter-notice stage UMG will just "override" your counter-notice and keep the video offline.

    MCNs were user's last refuge against these types of claims. If Content ID now applies to MCNs as well, there truly is no escaping it. A sad day indeed.

  • Feb 02, 2013 @ 03:09pm

    "Tormentis harlory?" lol. What is that, a Harry Potter spell for torturing prostitutes?

  • Jan 09, 2013 @ 10:12am

    FYI the term "new wine" is a reference to a statement Jesus made in the New Testament that you don't put new wine in an old stretched-out wineskin or else it will break. This itself was an analogy for the differences between Christianity and the old rituals of Judaism.

    That church may or may not serve wine for Communion, but that's not what the "new wine" reference is talking about.

  • Jan 03, 2013 @ 12:14pm

    The FAA is the US federal government at its absolute worst. Everything they do now is based on irrational and completely unfounded fears that have nothing to do with reality. I have personally been harassed twice by FAA safety officers for flying my 3 lb. video-piloted remote control plane and posting videos on YouTube. The first time was because someone filed a complaint against me in retaliation for an online petition I started asking the Academy of Model Aeronautics (a nationwide umbrella organization for RC flyers) to relax its rules for video-piloted RC flight, and they did not even have the right YouTube channel. The second call I got was about a video I posted flying my RC plane mostly at treetop level around my university campus. The FAA officer tried to convince me that my plane was an unauthorized unmanned aircraft system rather than a perfectly legal hobbyist RC aircraft, that I violated the law by flying it (in reality there are no laws in the US regulating RC aircraft, only voluntary guidelines), and that I posed a threat to manned aviation (despite flying low to the ground and taking precautions to avoid ever flying near manned aircraft). In the end he pretty much gave up since I knew more about the law than he did, and I haven't heard from him since.

    Actions like these though have the RC community terrified of the FAA and what regulations they may impose in the future. The probability of a collision between an RC plane and a manned aircraft is extremely low, and the damage it would cause would be no more than a single bird strike. Yet the FAA is paranoid about this and there is every indication that whenever they actually get around to passing regulations for unmanned aircraft, RC aircraft (particularly ones flown through live video links like mine) will be heavily regulated to the point of being useless. This despite a direct decree from Congress that the FAA is forbidden to regulate model aircraft, which the FAA has signaled it plans to ignore.

    The FAA these days is simply out of control and has to be reigned in. What will they next decide is a threat? Children's paper airplanes?

  • Nov 08, 2012 @ 12:37pm

    Patrick McKay of here. Techdirt has included comments from me about problems with YouTube's content ID system in the past. I have written a response to this situation on my site which you may find helpful. While I was initially cautiously optimistic about YouTube's new appeals process, in practice it has proved far less useful than one might have hoped, thanks to the seemingly arbitrary manner in which the appeal option is made available on new videos but not older ones, and the fact that YouTube requires users to "verify" their accounts with a cell phone before they can file an appeal. I am severely disappointed in YouTube for its clearly halfhearted attempt to deal with copyright claimants unilaterally reinstating false Content ID claims. YouTube should do better than this.

    You can read my full take on Julian Sanchez's situation here:

    By the way, I recall that Lawrence Lessig used some of these same remix videos in his presentations posted on YouTube about remix culture. Does anyone know if his videos are blocked as well?

  • Jul 23, 2012 @ 05:29pm

    Sounds awesome! I do hope they exercise some editorial control over the quality of the videos that go into it though. Most concert vids on YouTube are blurry iPhone captures where the phone was shaken around so much you can't see what's going on, the microphone is absolutely overloaded by the bass, and they have "vertical video syndrome" to boot. Keep those out and maybe it could create a decent video. Otherwise it would be horrible!

  • Feb 27, 2012 @ 03:10pm

    The real problem

    Thanks Techdirt for highlighting this issue, but as seems to be common with the tech press, you're missing the real heart of the problem. The problem here is NOT that Content ID mistakenly identified this guy's video as infringing. The problem is that when he disputed the mistaken match, YouTube gave the copyright claimant the sole discretion whether to accept his dispute or not. Rumblefish of course did what all copyright owners do and just blanket denied all disputes, causing YouTube to reinstate the Content ID match with a message that the dispute has been "reviewed and confirmed." This shows once again that the supposed "dispute" process in the Content ID system is a joke, since disputes almost never succeed anymore.

    As I have documented extensively on my website,, the real problem here is that when Content ID makes a mistaken match, YouTube gives the copyright claimant the ultimate authority to decide whether to accept a user's dispute. When the copyright claimant inevitably denies the dispute, the YouTube user has no further recourse. Though Content ID was originally intended as a front-end to the DMCA notice and counter-notice process, once a content ID claim has been "confirmed" against you, you have absolutely no further way to dispute it--either through Content ID or the DMCA process. Copyright claimants thus get to be the judges of their own disputes--a system which is ripe for abuse.

    I have documented this problem quite thoroughly on my website, along with many specific instances of blatant abuse by unethical companies using Content ID to steal ad revenue from videos they have no rights to. Please see for more info.

    It's time for YouTube to wake up and fix the problems with the Content ID system before someone sues them for facilitating copyright fraud!

  • Feb 23, 2012 @ 06:26am

    Wow, now I don't feel so bad about not being a finalist in that contest. I entered a paper arguing that music labels should provide legal ways to easily license music for use in online videos, as an alternative to ridiculous copyright filters like YouTube's. Though I'm generally a good writer and have won other writing competitions in the past, my paper didn't make the finalists (there were only about 40 entries in the ELI contest this year). I suppose the Grammy Foundation just isn't interested in hearing proposals for increasing legal access to copyrighted content, rather than just finding new ways to sue...

  • Nov 30, 2011 @ 06:44pm

    While I totally agree with everything Mike says in this article, it's worth noting that CNN did at least run an article about the SOPA controversy on their website:

    I have no idea what they've done in their television coverage since I don't have cable, but they haven't completely ignored the story.

  • Jan 19, 2011 @ 08:27pm


    Well if the RIAA is that upset about it, they should know the solution. If I remember right, ICANN will be selling off the rights to administer the new TLDs (which in my opinion are pointless-soon there will be way too many to even keep track of) to whoever pays for the privilege. So if the RIAA is that concerned about it, why don't they just pay the huge fee to become the primary registrar for the .music domain and then they can do whatever the want with it?