Viacom recently requested that YouTube remove more than 100,000 video clips that they claim infringe on their content.
Unfortunately, when you spread that wide of a net, a lot of dolphins get caught with the tuna. Among the 100,000 videos targeted for takedowns was a home movie shot in a BBQ joint, a film trailer by a documentarian, and a music video (previously here) about karaoke in Singapore. None of these contained anything owned by Viacom. Viacom has admitted to “no more than” 60 mistakes so far.
“If they are making these kinds of mistakes, who can tell how many fair uses of Viacom content they also targeted in their 100,000 takedowns?” asks EFF’s Fred von Lohmann. “Hundreds? Thousands?”
If your video has been removed from YouTube based on a bogus Viacom takedown, EFF wants talk with you – they may be able to help you directly or help find another lawyer who can.
EFF has created a video to explain the situation:
Unedited interview with 5 Feet dance team of KiD Productions (myspace.com/boss_d) backstage at Richards on Richards in Vancouver, Canada, February 9, 2007.
I watched “YouTube and Viacom Remove Parody Video!” and left a message. I want others to know that this isn’t just isolated incidents. There’s a big problem. I wrote YouTube an email immedaitely after I recieved their “Complaint” notification. A copy of it is on my blog: https://foreskinradio.wordpress.com/2007/02/02/fuck-viacom-and-ifilm/
However, I replied to them before I discovered Viacom’s ownership of iFilm. Viral marketting has become a big stategy for corporations now. Its not surprising they’re practising negative promotional schemes as well. They’re using the internet’s anarchistic spirit to drive new users to their affiliated websites. A brilliant plan actually. YouTube is a powerful brand; its become synonymous with user-generated media. Say “Q-tip” you think cotton swabs, say “Xerox” you think photocopies, “iPod” has already come to mean portable media players in general. Public perception means everything to companies. Viacom isn’t concerned so much about copyright infringements as they are with controlling how their content is perceived and distributed. Now the only place to view Comedy Central clips, like the Daily Show, is at Viacom controlled sites. This way all the advertising revenue goes to them instead of cutting a deal with YouTube. OK, so that seems somewhat reasonable; its their content, their ad money. However, by making such a huge fuse they generate mass media attention, changing public perception about YouTube and copyright protection. Remember the slaughter and demonization of Napster? The internet business models have adapted since those wild days of filesharing and the dotcom boom & bust. Viral videos and viral marketting can generate big buzz and profits. Big Media wants their fat fingers in as much of the pie as they can. They hate competing against all of this free content (blogs, podcasts, user-created videos, etc.). They’re lobbying the gov’t to pass legislation to regulate and restrict the producers and distrubtors of free content using the issue of copyright as their main weapon. Net Neutrality and Copyright laws are some of the most important issues facing internet-users today. The community needs to be aware and let their voices be heard, if they want to protect and strengthen the rights and freedoms of their online citzenship. Citzens of the Internet is what we are, and a Internet Constituation is what we need.
Alright, I’ll stop there before I get anymore dramatic. I hope all that made sense or at least was worth your time to read. Thank you for your support and please spread the message. If you don’t mind, I’d like to post a copy of this correspondence on my blog.
regard MTV videos: Music videos are dead. MTV generates more ad revenue from shows like Laguna Beach than with traditional videos b/c they attract a wider, more captive audience. Furthermore, MTV target demographic is spending more and more of their time on YouTube. Everything is marketting. Marketting is everything.
> Brilliant vid!You’re very observant. The idea the that the people at Viacom may be purposely making false accusations so people can get mad at the YouTube staff and leave to go to iFilms is something that never came to mind until you mentioned it. That’s something to think about. It is very possible. Think about it – why are so many MTV videos (for example) still up? Something very fishy is going on.
> You’re not the only one having problems. Check these videos out:
> YouTube and Viacom Remove Parody Video!
> by: MattHawes
> Viacom owns me now?!?
> by: Delaypat
> Wow! In “Delaypat’s” video, he explains that his video did not have any music nor did it have any logos nor images related to Viacom in any way. He says that it was just a video of him falling down the stairs.
> You can just type in the words “Viacom” and YouTube” in YouTube’s search engine to find the videos. Good luck!