Articles

This section contains various articles I have written about copyright, fair use, and user-generated video. Most of these originally come from my personal blog: http://prelator.wordpress.com

YouTube Refuses to Honor DMCA Counter-Notices

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Last October, YouTube announced some much needed reforms to its Content ID copyright dispute process. Bowing to growing public pressure, YouTube ended the practice of allowing copyright claimants to unilaterally deny disputes, leaving users with no further recourse to have non-infringing videos restored.

YouTube established a new “appeals” process, which once again gave users whose videos are blocked by Content ID recourse to the DMCA counter-notice process if the copyright owner insists on rejecting their dispute. At the end of the process, the user’s video would be restored unless the copyright claimant actually filed a lawsuit seeking an injunction to keep it offline. No longer.

 

YouTube's New Content ID Appeals Process: Not as Useful as You Might Think

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Last month YouTube announced a new process for appealing reinstated Content ID claims that was supposed to solve the problem of copyright owners being made the ultimate judge of disputes against their own copyright claims. Sadly, the new appeals process has turned out to be far less useful than one would have hoped, thanks to the seemingly arbitrary way in which the appeal option is available on some videos and not others, and the requirement to "verify" your YouTube account with a text message sent to a cell phone before you can file an appeal.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 28 November 2012 18:56

 

Victory! YouTube Reforms Content ID Dispute Process

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In a blog post yesterday, YouTube announced a new appeals process for Content ID disputes, which should put an end to copyright claimants acting as judges of their own claims and once again give users whose videos are blocked or monetized by false Content ID matches recourse to the counter-notice process under the DMCA. The new appeals process is described in greater detail here. As I said in a quote on Ars Technica, at this point I am cautiously optimistic about this new appeals process. If implemented correctly, it will be a huge step forward toward protecting the rights of online video creators against overzealous copyright claims.

Last Updated on Thursday, 04 October 2012 13:52

 

Does Content ID abuse infringe copyright?

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Lately I've been pondering an interesting question. What is the legal effect of a false or fraudulent Content ID match on YouTube, as compared to a false or fraudulent DMCA notice? While the law provides a clear cause of action for filing a misrepresentative DMCA takedown notice, it is completely silent as to the legal status of private copyright enforcement systems like YouTube's Content ID that have the same basic effect as the DMCA notice-and-takedown process but none of its safeguards. I have been developing a theory that the deliberate misuse of such private copyright systems to claim content you do not own may itself constitute copyright infringement.
 

SOPA, Private Copyright Enforcement Systems, & Free Speech

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Throughout the debate over the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect IP Act (PIPA), there has been one refrain commonly invoked by the pro-copyright, anti-internet crowd. “There is no first amendment right to infringe someone’s copyright.” Or “copyright and free speech do not conflict.” Leaving aside the obvious fact that the Supreme Court has repeatedly stated that there IS in fact a first amendment right to make unauthorized use of copyrighted material under the fair use doctrine, the idea that copyright and free speech do not conflict is demonstrably false.

 

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