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Youtube Music

Flaw In YouTube Takedown Process Exposed 181

Posted by Soulskill
from the in-the-case-of-chicken-v-egg dept.
New submitter BraveThumb writes "One independent rap group found it impossible to post their song on YouTube. When they tried to put up their video, they were informed that the copyright belonged to Universal Music, even though the rap group wasn't signed to any label. Another group working with Universal had used the music in a video of their own, which then accidentally leaked online. YouTube's filtering software then blocked the original. The Hollywood Reporter shares what happened and concludes by saying, 'For an industry that's pursuing copyright reform, the portrayal of a copyright regime that works against young artists can't be a good thing.'"
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Flaw In YouTube Takedown Process Exposed

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  • by rhook (943951) on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:15PM (#38845693)

    Give them a taste of their own medicine.

    • by tepples (727027) <tepples&gmail,com> on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:20PM (#38845739) Homepage Journal
      Wouldn't the proper claim be "slander of title"? Universal represented to YouTube that it had the exclusive right to block a work from appearing on YouTube, when it in fact had only a nonexclusive license from this rap group.
      • by mwvdlee (775178)

        Where does it state the "other group working with Universal" had a non-exclusive license?
        Perhaps it was fair use (although enough of the track was used to be recognized), but according to Universal et all, fair use == copyright infringement.

        • Where does it state the "other group working with Universal" had a non-exclusive license?

          On a quick reread, I discovered that it doesn't. In my comment, I gave UMG the benefit of the doubt, ass-uming it had licensed the sample from ATS, the same way that (say) a judge would when considering a motion for summary judgment.

          • by Obfuscant (592200) on Friday January 27, 2012 @08:14PM (#38846761)

            In my comment, I gave UMG the benefit of the doubt, ass-uming it had licensed the sample from ATS,

            And from what I read in TFA, it appears that Yelawolf used the music and presented it to their label as their own work. I don't know if UMG had the responsibility to verify that claim or not. I'd think it would be rather hard to do that, considering that the music was from an unsigned indie artist who, it appears, hadn't published it yet anywhere.

            It looks, to me, like Yelawolf is the bad guy here, not UMG. I should be able to leave it unsaid that the fact that I think UMG isn't the bad guy in this case doesn't say anything about any other actions.

      • by pixelpusher220 (529617) on Friday January 27, 2012 @07:36PM (#38846497)
        They had *no* license to use the work. linky [techdirt.com]

        The summary also makes it look like YouTube did this. In fact, Youtube allows the music labels themselves to add songs to filter on. So UMG saw their artist play a song then someone else play the song (the true author) and so uploaded the song as a violation...even though their artist was in fact the violator.
        • by Obfuscant (592200) on Friday January 27, 2012 @08:10PM (#38846737)

          So UMG saw their artist play a song then someone else play the song (the true author) and so uploaded the song as a violation...

          No, actually, UMG listed the song after someone had leaked a ripped copy of the Yelawolf version so that nobody could upload the Yelawolf version to YouTube again. They were protecting the product that they believed they had clear copyright to, but didn't know at the time it contained music from a different author.

          Whuzi wasn't the target of the takedowns, ripped copies of Yelawolf were. It's just that the detection system caught the fact that Yelawolf had used the Whuzi music, and now the issue is did he do it with or without permission. Whuzi isn't clear on that, and didn't answer that explicit question when asked.

          • by pixelpusher220 (529617) on Saturday January 28, 2012 @12:41AM (#38847969)
            Given the hypocrisy of the UMG and the other labels of shooting first and asking questions later when people use *their* music...it's perfectly reasonable to call them out when it shows just how presumptuous they are.

            They didn't ask if they had permission they just 'assumed'. Sort of like I can 'assume' if I find it online it must be free to use right?
        • by 1u3hr (530656)

          he summary also makes it look like YouTube did this.

          They did. That they allow UMG the ability to take down videos doesn't absolve Youtube of responsibility, legal or moral. But I'm sure they've covered their asses with disclaimers and small print.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:20PM (#38845741)

      You can't fight fire with fire when they have more napalm than you.

      • Sure you can. But you'd better be wearing your asbestos Underoos when you try ;)
      • by rhook (943951)

        You can if you're smart about it, go straight for their napalm manufacturing and storage depot.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:22PM (#38845763)

      unsigned group's budget for lawyers: $20
      Universal's budget for lawyers: millions

      see the problem?

      • by Baloroth (2370816) on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:28PM (#38845807)

        unsigned group's budget for lawyers: $20
        Universal's budget for lawyers: millions

        Public opinion: priceless.

        • by headkase (533448) on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:35PM (#38845879)
          Getting appreciable public attention? Priceless (no /. doesn't count).
        • by wierd_w (1375923) on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:38PM (#38845919)

          There are some things money can buy.

          For everything else, there's lobbyists.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Public opinion: $0

          Even with the uproar about bills, ACTA will become the law of the land still.

          • by Anthony Mouse (1927662) on Friday January 27, 2012 @09:20PM (#38847191)

            Even with the uproar about bills, ACTA will become the law of the land still.

            If you sit on your duff and do nothing about it? Sure. Or you could make some phone calls like we did against SOPA and maybe we can chalk up another win for the good guys.

            • by jd2112 (1535857)

              Even with the uproar about bills, ACTA will become the law of the land still.

              If you sit on your duff and do nothing about it? Sure. Or you could make some phone calls like we did against SOPA and maybe we can chalk up another win for the good guys.

              The media companies are tenacious. They will get some of what they want added to the Babies and Puppies Protection Act of 2012. The will get some of it added to the God Bless War Vets Act of 2013. Before you know it they will have everything they wanted in SOPA and more. Get ready for tax increases necessary for all the new prisons needed to house copyright infringers in.

              • I've said it before and I'll say it again: How is that any excuse to give up without a fight?

                If someone comes to you every day and eats your lunch, do you just acquiesce because you know he'll come back tomorrow if you don't? No, you give him a good swift kick in the jewels [opencongress.org] and then try to have them prosecuted. [whitehouse.gov] Then you get together with all their other victims and start planning out a strategy to stop them from coming back again.

            • by rhook (943951)

              Obama already signed ACTA last year. And since he signed it as an executive agreement it does not need to be ratified by Congress.

          • by Gordonjcp (186804)

            Good - because with ACTA you could take down UMG's website over this...

        • by Trogre (513942)

          unsigned group's budget for lawyers: $20
          Universal's budget for lawyers: millions

          Public opinion: priceless.

          Apathetic public opinion: worthless

        • Public opinion: priceless.

          What good would public opinion do in this case? Those who would boycott Universal have done so for years. At most a real outcry might prod someone in Washington to act, but I'd argue that if that were going to happen, it would have happened after the Dajaz1.com incident. [techdirt.com]

        • by currently_awake (1248758) on Saturday January 28, 2012 @12:32AM (#38847947)
          Issue a DMCA takedown request against the other band. That's what the law is for.
          • Issue a DMCA takedown request against the other band. That's what the law is for.

            Can't because it isn't posted. That's the whole point - UMG blocked their own leaked video not realizing the content of that video was really somebody else's. But no version of that video is on youtube anymore, so there isn't anything to file a take down request against.

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward
        Wouldn't Google help the Artist on this type of issues. Small independent artists are probably bringing more money to Google than large labels. I get big label music everywhere, but independents not so much.

        Why Google doesn't take a step and sets a precedent on this issue? It's no like SOPA/PIPA/UMG weren't planning on going against them... so Google should use this type of incidents to fight back.
    • by ackthpt (218170) on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:47PM (#38846025) Homepage Journal

      Give them a taste of their own medicine.

      Take down Universal Music, because, you don't know they aren't pirating other artists works, too.

    • by icebike (68054) * on Friday January 27, 2012 @07:13PM (#38846287)

      Give them a taste of their own medicine.

      Massive escalating fines for take down orders that prove to be false is the only solution here.

      $100,000 for first offense, payable 90% to the victim, 10% to the hosting site, escalating 10% (compounding) for each instance.

      The risk of even one false take down order should be enough to get their attention.

      • by Dhalka226 (559740)

        Was there a takedown order involved? Admittedly I only read the summary, but all it mentions is YouTube's automated software. Universal may be infringing this groups copyright with regard to the music, but they DO have a copyright on their own video and they could argue--very easily--that they did not request any takedown nor did they make any affirmation that would fall under perjury.

        And in fact, regardless of the specific facts of this case, there's your loophole. Labels will just get sites like YouT

        • by satuon (1822492)

          The system as it stands now makes Youtube liable for uploaded videos but not liable for videos they refuse to upload. They can refuse to upload for any reason after all - hey it's their site, it's their servers. They're not a public utility after all.

          But here lies a conflict of interest. Once Youtube has been forced by DMCA to set up an automated filter for UMG to use, they have no further interest in ensuring that UMG does not abuse it. Why bother scrutinize every addition to the filter by UMG? Do they gai

      • by Sabriel (134364)

        Of course, that has the problem that only the incredibly rich will dare submit a takedown order, because for everyone else the first $100,000 fine will bankrupt them.

        Unless you want to give the rich even more power, may I suggest starting at 0.1% of gross income instead? And before anyone thinks that's too small, don't forget it's a compounding escalation. Multiple infractions will add up fast....

    • by stms (1132653)

      This isn't a flaw its a feature you see the big publishers now own the copyright to "anything that sound like rap". Universal was the only publisher excluded from this copyright.

    • by bratwiz (635601)

      $1,000 for every download.

    • In particular, sue them $50,000 per view on the infringing music video. =)

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:20PM (#38845737)

    Independent artist: "Yay, we made this awesome song!"

    Universal: "We like this song. We'll use it in a video that we will then put a copyright on." ...days pass...

    Independent artist: "Why can't we post our song on YouTube?"

    Universal: "Oh, you mean this song? It's ours now. Thanks!"

    • by jesseck (942036)
      I wouldn't be surprised if that is how it went (I won't RTFA yet- better to just jump to conclusions)- young rap group makes song, big rap group (signed to Universal) says "Cool, can we use that for a project?", young rap groups says yes because of exposure, and Universal proceeds to claim sole copyright on the song.
    • Re:Song Osmosis (Score:5, Interesting)

      by ackthpt (218170) on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:56PM (#38846117) Homepage Journal

      Independent artist: "Yay, we made this awesome song!"

      Universal: "We like this song. We'll use it in a video that we will then put a copyright on." ...days pass...

      Independent artist: "Why can't we post our song on YouTube?"

      Universal: "Oh, you mean this song? It's ours now. Thanks!"

      First occurance I heard of this sort of back-ass-ward copyrighting was the voice of Foghorn Leghorn. The dialect humor of Kenny Delmar began with Counselor Carteblanche on the Alan Young radio show, followed by his use of the same character, but amplified a bit more on a southern character for his Senator Claghorn (see the name similarity?) on the Fred Allen radio show, in the Allen's Alley segments. Delmar even played a Claghorn character in the 1947 film "It's A Joke, Son."

      Then of all things, the crazy and fun people making Looney Toons and Merry Melodies, who enjoyed a nod to other characters, people or fads of the day, incorporated a big blowhard of a rooster, The Foghorn Leghorn into a cartoon - with Mel Blanc doing the voice. Eventually Warner would Copyright the voice of Foghorn Leghorn, much to the chagrin of Delmar who had effectively created it and a few of the catch phrases "listen while I'm talking to ya, boy" & "That's a joke, son!", preventing Delmar from using the voice for his own profit.

  • by wierd_w (1375923) on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:21PM (#38845757)

    Really, how is this any different than the commerically incited mass copyright infringements from criaa labels on their back catalogs 3 years ago? Or how they all shamelessly violated copyright on an anticopyright psa?

    These fuckers are classic hipocrites. Hello kettle. I am pot. You are black.

    They only support "artist interests" when it suits their profit motive. The same is true for their support of copyright.

    • by jamstar7 (694492) on Friday January 27, 2012 @07:07PM (#38846219)

      They only support "artist interests" when it suits their profit motive. The same is true for their support of copyright.

      The only 'artistry' the media companies are interested in is the artistry needed to hide profits from the artists themselves. You don't really think all that money goes to rock stars, do you?

      I got the chance to look over a 'standard starup contract' for a new band a few years back. Yeah, they got a $30,000 advance, on 3 albums. The fine print said, they had to use the label's recording studio at the usual rate, plus the label's engineers & techs, also at the usual rate. The label wiould supply the producer, paid for by the band at the producer's usual rate. Advertising and promotion would be provided by the label and paid for by the band at the label's usual rate. And so on and so forth. All of this was supposed to come out of the band's share of the profits before they got paid a dime. Oh, they also had to pay back that $30,000 advance before they saw any money. And they only got a small percentage of the profits.

      I remember a commercial for a tax service that aired about 3 years ago where one guy played a musician and said "I made 250,000 last year. If I do that good this year, I might break even!'.

      • by firex726 (1188453)

        Yep, 100% normal.

        Often times a bank will be in debt tens or even hundreds of thousands which their share has to pay off. Keep in mind their share might be as small as 0.1%. Plus the label can then go and do more advertising with consultation of the band so the band would rack up additional debt.

        The only groups who ever made real money were the ultra popular ones. All the stuff you see on TV and the like is on loan to the group, at a nominal fee of course too.

        Being signed to a major label might as well be sl

        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Often times a bank will be in debt tens or even hundreds of thousands which their share has to pay off.

          You're off by about 6 orders of magnitude and they have the government to pay off their debt.

          Oh...you meant band...never mind.

      • A million years ago I read Courtney Love's speech to the Digital Hollywood Online Entertainment Conference [salon.com], explaining that situation in much more detail...

  • by Etcetera (14711) on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:26PM (#38845785) Homepage

    We keep asking for more intelligent and/or rational application of Copyright laws, including people bitching about draconian use of lawsuits, etc.

    The alternative is something like this. IT'S NOT YOUTUBE'S FAULT. Youtube discovers someone else has uploaded this music and (presumably) claimed copyright over it. Someone "else" uploads it, and their software catches it. Good job, Youtube. The "original" artists should work things out with the other group, and/or sue someone.

    Just not Youtube.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      > Just not Youtube.

      THIS. Youtube should stay out of this battle and NOT provide one side with a tool that lets it take down videos without proper procedure.

    • We keep asking for more intelligent and/or rational application of Copyright laws, including people bitching about draconian use of lawsuits, etc.

      The alternative is something like this. IT'S NOT YOUTUBE'S FAULT. Youtube discovers someone else has uploaded this music and (presumably) claimed copyright over it. Someone "else" uploads it, and their software catches it. Good job, Youtube. The "original" artists should work things out with the other group, and/or sue someone.

      Just not Youtube.

      But YouTube has all the money...

    • by bky1701 (979071) on Friday January 27, 2012 @07:21PM (#38846361) Homepage
      Or we could just stop shilling for the copyright industry entirely, get rid of copyright, and go back to actually selling physical objects and considering information free. Worked for, what, ten thousand years? Funny that most of the truly famous music, literature, and art was created before copyright was even a thought.
  • by gellenburg (61212) <george@ellenburg.org> on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:26PM (#38845787) Homepage Journal

    Flaw #1 - Using YouTube to distribute your video. There ARE alternatives now.

    Flaw #2 - Not suing UMG in Small Claims Court for damages. You want Small Claims since Universal would expressly be prohibited from using any lawyers.

    If enough people who've had their videos taken down erroneously sue UMG in small claims court you'll literally bankrupt them.

    • by rhook (943951)

      You're not going to bankrupt any corporation in small claims court, the maximum damages are far too low.

      • by tepples (727027) <tepples&gmail,com> on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:38PM (#38845915) Homepage Journal
        If ten thousand plaintiffs sue a large company and win $1,000 each, that's $10 million that the company has to explain to its shareholders.
        • by Jeng (926980)

          And they will explain to their shareholders that it is the cost of doing business and then the shareholders will reward the CEO with $50 million for explaining it to them and $100 million to lobby to have it illegal to sue them in small claims court.

          The amount of money involved is so ridiculous that you cannot nickel and dime them to death, you have to cut off their stream of revenue, not just drain it.

        • by KhabaLox (1906148)

          UMG had a 2010 EBITA of 471 million euros (about $622 million USD).

      • by c++0xFF (1758032)

        Indeed, the limits in small claims court seem to be [nolo.com] in the range of $2,500 to $25,000 (depending on the state). Then again, the RIAA has been awarded roughly this amount as the per-song damages in cases they bring against individuals ... that makes it feel about right in my mind.

        So, it's not enough to bankrupt UMG by any means, but it's still just and appropriate, given the actions they would take if the tables were turned.

    • by tepples (727027)
      What are the primary alternatives to YouTube that automatically transcode a submitted video to both VP8 and AVC in 240p, 360p, 480p, 720p, and 1080p, and automatically select the right encode for the user's screen size, CPU speed, browser, and Internet throughput at playback time?
    • by mlts (1038732) *

      I'd disagree. Yes, there are other video sites, but a lot of them use dodgy ad rotators that serve up exploits, require Web based add-ons or codecs (which likely are exploited), or just won't display on most machines.

      Youtube is nice because it won't just give you the middle finger if you decide to browse it on your iPad; most other vid sites, the only thing you will be viewing is a link to Adobe to download Flash, Shockwave, or RealPlayer.

    • Having experienced this once..

      Who, exactly, do you think Universal would send to court to represent them in your small-claims court action?
      Hint: A lawyer.

    • Flaw #2 - Not suing UMG in Small Claims Court for damages. You want Small Claims since Universal would expressly be prohibited from using any lawyers.

      Small claims limits the damages available, and venue issues would often require an inconvenient venue for the claimant. Plus, small claims rules don't prevent parties from consulting with lawyers to prepare for the trial, nor do they even prevent them from being represented by a lawyer at the trial (typically, IIRC, the small claims rule is that a lawyer may o

    • by Hentes (2461350)

      There are alternatives, but Youtube has far the biggest userbase, so if they can't use it to reach people that's doing them a lot of harm.

  • by MrMista_B (891430) on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:26PM (#38845791)

    How is this not working as it is intended to? The point of copyright, as the big labels intend it, is to prevent competition from unsigned artists.

    • by JeanCroix (99825)
      Exactly. It's not only about "fighting piracy," it's about controlling distribution channels. MAFIAA doesn't want internet and digital recording technology replacing them as the middle-man between artist and audience. They make a big stink about the piracy aspect, but most laws the MAFIAA lobbies to get passed also impede independent distribution. So-called piracy is (mostly) a diversion from their long-term strategy.
  • by tatman (1076111) on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:30PM (#38845843) Homepage
    This is a win for the big labels. They want young artists not affiliated with a label to have a hard time getting their music out there.
  • Copyright reform? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jc42 (318812) on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:39PM (#38845929) Homepage Journal

    'For an industry that's pursuing copyright reform, the portrayal of a copyright regime that works against young artists can't be a good thing.

    The copyright reform being persued is clearly aimed at further control of new artistic works by the old corporations that have been such a heavy weight on artists for the past century.

    If we want true "reform", we'll use this as a tool to push for legislation that supports the rights of artists to control of their own works.

    If there were any justice in the copyright issue, Universal Music would be hit hard with a fraud charge (and serious fines) for their part in this atrocity. We all know that this won't happen, though, and they'll continue to commit such acts in the future.

    It might be interesting to start a collection of the Big Labels' claims of copyright for things that they don't in fact own.

  • This isn't a flaw (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Nadaka (224565) on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:40PM (#38845933)

    This is one of the many use cases for draconian copyright persecution. It allows the big name corps to lay exclusive claim to all media, even those who they do not represent.

  • Sounds like the rap group has a good copyright claim against Universal. Why haven't they filed complaints to have Universal's product yanked off the market?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 27, 2012 @06:57PM (#38846127)

    This has happened to me multiple times.

    I upload a video that uses classical music, which I have a buyout license to use. Within seconds, it is flagged as infringing by a DIFFERENT licensor of classical music.

    There is an appeals process. It has no provision for reporting a false positive, and the appeal is "judged" by the company claiming I am infringing. They then proceed to monetize my video.

    There is no way to inform Youtube of this issue, other than firing off a lawsuit ($$$). Even the CEO of the licensing agency I used can't get an answer out of them.

    The absurdity of claiming to be able to distinguish between two performances of common classical music ought to be obvious -- not to mention that what with sublicensing, multiple groups may have the right to grant buyout licenses for the exact same performances.

    If you want a preview of what PIPA/SOPA would do, look no further that Youtube's Content Match process.

    • by Sabriel (134364)

      If your video contains original work in addition to the licensed classical music, and the company that claims you are infringing proceeds to monetise your video, can you file a takedown notice against that company?

      You also mention the problem of "other than firing off a lawsuit ($$$)". Perhaps the EFF or similar organisation might be interested?

  • 'For an industry that's pursuing copyright reform, the portrayal of a copyright regime that works against young artists can't be a good thing.'"

    Newsflash: They don't care how bad they look. they're like the NRA, tobacco companies, and people who murder orphans, dolphins, and eat babies, then pee on the corpses and set fire to them using antique shredded american flags from the civil war... reputation doesn't matter. Profit matters.

    Get 'em hooked young, and a whole generation will grow up clueless about how free the internet used to be...

  • You assume that its for the little guy.. it works quite well for the industry.

    They consider it a good thing.

  • Rap Sucks (Score:5, Funny)

    by CapOblivious2010 (1731402) on Friday January 27, 2012 @07:14PM (#38846295)
    Anything that reduces the amount of rap music out there is a good thing.

    Now get off my lawn!
  • Just Curious... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by element-o.p. (939033) on Friday January 27, 2012 @07:34PM (#38846469) Homepage
    I'm a bit confused as to what happened here. I recently posted a video of a portion of a motorcycle trip I took on YouTube (http://youtu.be/gQbwJjcO2N4 if anyone cares ;). The audio consisted exclusively of the sound of my motorcycle engine and wind noise (through the really, really crappy microphone on my camera) -- no music mixed in after the fact, no voice over, just motorcycle engine and wind noise -- and the video was all shot by me, on the road. A couple of weeks later, while on YouTube, I saw a notice that one of my videos contained "potentially infringing material". I followed the links, and sure enough, this was the offending video. There was another link that allowed me to dispute the claim, so I clicked it, and offered the justification that all of the audio and video was recorded by myself and that to the best of my knowledge, it contained no infringing material. Just checked YouTube -- the video is still there, and the "infringing content" notification has been removed.

    Why did I have no trouble with this, but the artists in TFA did? Perhaps none of the **AA's are even remotely interested in my video (likely), but the rap artists had the potential of $$$ with their video?
    • by KhabaLox (1906148)

      Perhaps the algorithm thought you were using a Brian Eno album as the soundtrack.

    • Re:Just Curious... (Score:4, Interesting)

      by NJRoadfan (1254248) on Saturday January 28, 2012 @01:06AM (#38848035)
      This has been a growing problem with YouTube. The new thing is some groups are claiming copyright on works in behalf of the producer of the works.... except they have ZERO affiliation or contract with them. They are simply collecting money from the AdSense ads that comes up (on works they have ZERO rights to) once the content is "claimed" as copyrighted. This is plain old theft, particularly if you are a YouTube partner or monetizing your videos that are 100% original work and hold complete copyright of. Do a search for "AdRev" and "Music Publishing Rights Collecting Society" and check the YouTube support forums for more examples of this abuse. Both are known copyright trolls and will stall out the process all while you lose ad revenue on the so called "infringing" video.
    • by jrumney (197329)
      Probably the dispute link causes a human to review the video. In your case, they see that there has obviously been a cock-up, as there is no music, and the video is obviously not commercially produced. In the TFA case, there is music, and Universal says it is theirs. See the difference yet?
  • by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Friday January 27, 2012 @07:38PM (#38846513)
    Seriously. For those who don't remember, the DMCA put in place this ridiculous takedown process, which requires sites to take down works based merely on somebody's say-so, without any due process. That has inevitably led to situations in which some people do not have access to certain media at all. And of course, as usual in recent years, the whole process is slanted toward big corporations.

    There should never be a law in the United States that forces compliance without first having to go through due process. The system wasn't broken, and the DMCA didn't fix it. The DMCA made things worse.

    I was against these provisions of the DMCA and protested them before the law was even passed. We are merely seeing the results that many of us knew had to happen if such a bad law was passed.

    As far as I am concerned, the ONLY good parts of the DMCA are the "safe harbor" provisions. Given a choice, I would shitcan the entire rest of the Act.
  • Laugh... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by koan (80826) on Friday January 27, 2012 @07:41PM (#38846535)

    Copyrights aren't for protecting artist...

  • "For an industry that's pursuing copyright reform, the portrayal of a copyright regime that works against young artists can't be a good thing."

    They aren't pursuing copyright reform. They are pursuing aggrandizement, extension, enlargement, enforcement, enhancement, globalization, privatization, and institutionalization of copyright.

  • Whenever I read a story about copyright I am reminded of a great quote from Pablo Picasso: good artists borrow, great artists steal.

    Artists do not depend on copyright to make their art or benefit from it. Only business-types need copyright, so they can keep making money off of someone else's work for decades after the artist has expired.

  • by wynterwynd (265580) on Friday January 27, 2012 @09:50PM (#38847343)

    Yes, Universal is evil and greedy and etc, but all the reactionary comments are glossing over a key fact here:

    Per the article in link 2, Universal was asserting rights over a song by an signed artist called Yelawolf. Yelawolf sampled the music without getting permission and released his own rap over the original song. He happened to be signed by Universal, so their lawyers assumed *(and here's the part where Universal fucked up)* that Yelawolf owned the rights and issued a takedown notice. So Universal was lazy and presumptuous, but it's Yelawolf who was the most to blame for this.

    While this is not entirely Universal's fault, they clearly dropped the ball here by not looking closely enough into it. They just assumed they were right and that the original artists were lying/wrong/hatin' and didn't do their homework. The brunt of the blame is on Yelawolf, but Universal's lawyers got caught napping when they should have treated this more seriously. Hence, incoming PR landmine.

    The real problem here is that YouTube trusts Universal and their lawyers with the policing of copyrights without giving equal weight to a complainant. And then the foxes guarding the chickens just did what comes naturally. If you're going to proclaim to be a neutral site for hosting videos, you have to really fight to stay neutral and give everyone the same fair shake. Otherwise you're being controlled just as if you were owned by them, they just have a more convoluted method of giving you orders.

    Shame on Yelawolf for being a groove-thief, Shame on YouTube for trusting the Devil, and then any leftover shame can go to Universal for not properly checking up on their signed artists' work.

  • by Cyberllama (113628) on Saturday January 28, 2012 @01:01AM (#38848025)

    YouTube doesn't follow a standard DMCA model where they file a claim, you file a counter-claim, and then YouTube steps out and leaves it between the two of you. Instead, YouTube hands the keys over to the labels and lets them be judge. You file a counter-claim, and they respond with "Nope. Counter-Claim rejected" or they simply don't respond at all. Either way, your soundtrack stays banned. I've had this happen to my videos twice now using Creative Commons *mash-ups*. There are indeed bits and fragments of their music mixed in there, but mash-ups are on pretty firm ground when it comes to fair use. The licensing rights should lie with the artist, who in turn released i t under a CC license for anyone to use.

    Nevertheless, once now with BMG and once now with Universal I've had them file claims (disabling the soundtracks for anyone viewing in Germany) and ignore my counter-claims. At that point, there's nothing I can do anymore. Even if I were willing to indemnify YouTube and tell the labels to come after to me if they don't like it, it's just not even an option.

    It's the same crap that happened to Tech News Today when their news show included a clip of the MegaUpload song in a story about it. Normally a counter-claim would be the end of it and they'd have to sue you (which they wouldn't do in cases of obvious fair use), but they feel empowered to ignore legitimate fair use because, apparently, they can.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    This is not a flaw.

    I make my living teaching, and sometimes post lecture videos online.

    The problem is that big companies copy my videos, and their corporate lawyers automatically copyright them. (WOLFRAM!!!)

    Then, my web sites get taken down with phone notices.

    Hollywood, the software industry, and the recording industry make their livings by stealing from people like me.

  • Man Bites Dog is news. Flaw In YouTube Takedown Process is not news. YouTube Takedown Process Works As Intended is news.

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