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EBay, Facebook, Yahoo, Want An End To Viacom YouTube Lawsuit
engine




msg:4142010
 4:04 pm on May 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

EBay, Facebook, Yahoo, Want An End To Viacom YouTube Lawsuit [bloomberg.com]
Yahoo! Inc., IAC/InterActiveCorp, EBay Inc. and Facebook Inc. urged a judge to dismiss Viacom Inc.’s copyright-infringement lawsuit against Google Inc.’s YouTube video-sharing website.

The four Internet companies filed friend-of-the-court legal briefs on behalf of YouTube yesterday in Manhattan federal court, where a judge is weighing YouTube’s and Viacom’s legal motions in the 2007 lawsuit.


Earlier Story

Viacom Claim Google Made 'business decision' Over Piracy [webmasterworld.com]

 

Alcoholico




msg:4142064
 4:54 pm on May 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

Let me get this straight, in US law if you manage to gather some fellow friends willing to support you then you can rob a bank and get away with it for your friends said you are nice and in the future (or the present) they also want to do the same thing and also get away with it. Accomplices, that's what I'd call them. Google knew that they were (and are) profiting from copyrighted work and did nothing to stop it.
The facts are clear, I can't see how this would retard the development of the Internet and electronic commerce as their attorney claims, or is stealing copyrighted works the future of the Internet, it should be the other way, stop it now so the Internet can have an honest future where people and companies will work eagerly without fears that their work will be stolen and there's nothing they can do about that.

StoutFiles




msg:4142083
 5:13 pm on May 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

The four Internet companies filed friend-of-the-court legal briefs on behalf of YouTube yesterday in Manhattan federal court, where a judge is weighing YouTube’s and Viacom’s legal motions in the 2007 lawsuit.


W.T.F.

What roles do EBay, Facebook, and Yahoo have in this case again? How about Viacom go get the RIAA to file a brief? They probably don't want to see Viacom win because this case could be used against companies for how they use content they don't have the rights to (I'm looking at YOU, Facebook).

outland88




msg:4142101
 5:23 pm on May 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

If that don’t beat all. Let’s “bum rush” or "strong arm" the courts to protect our special interests and conceal other possible wrongdoings. If the judge can’t smell this a mile off the court system is in trouble. The court did not request these opinions so it looks like no more than an attempt to subvert the law. It looks like something the "Russian Mafia" would dream up.

Even though the US Government denied the Yahoo/Google merger I have long suspected there is a very strong behind the scenes relationship between the two that crosses questionable lines.

Demaestro




msg:4142126
 5:50 pm on May 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

Amicus Curiae has been a part of the USA court system for a long time. I am not sure why you are all freaking out, this ruling will affect sites with user generated content and these sites are letting the court know this.

There have been many "friend of the court" filings and they rarely imply collusion, in fact there are many, many cases where rivals and competitors have a shared interest in the outcome of a court case and band together for the purposes of protecting their interests. It is transparent and a just way of businesses protecting their interests, at least these aren't backroom deals.

thecoalman




msg:4142249
 8:03 pm on May 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

What roles do EBay, Facebook, and Yahoo have in this case again?


If someone posts a video, text, file, code, news article, .... what's preventing them from getting sued next?

If every site could be held liable for all user generated content the ramifications are huge.

soluml




msg:4142272
 8:29 pm on May 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

If someone posts a video, text, file, code, news article, .... what's preventing them from getting sued next?

If every site could be held liable for all user generated content the ramifications are huge.


Exactly! As long as Google is reasonably keeping up with removing unlawful content, the user should be the one targeted by Viacom not Youtube.

If every site is held liable for user generated content... user input as we know it will die on the web. I know I couldn't take the chance hosting a forum like this where someone could post a copyrighted image and I not catch it.

Good for Yahoo, Ebay and Facebook for protecting our interests (albeit by protecting their own selfish ones).

Alcoholico




msg:4142280
 8:43 pm on May 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

It's not "an image", the initial claim was for 63,000 copyrighted works, and these account only for those whose copyright owner is Viacom. If they want to profit and avoid problems with the law, hire more employees to deal with these things or do not accept unreviewed user contents, after all they are profiting from those contents. I agree the one who uploaded the content should be held liable but only if this user is also profiting from these stolen contents.

Demaestro




msg:4142292
 8:57 pm on May 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

If they want to profit and avoid problems with the law, hire more employees to deal with these things or do not accept unreviewed user contents,


So you want them to do the impossible. You want Youtube to look at every video submitted and compare it to what? Every video ever made? Then compare the audio, to every piece of audio every copyrighted?

That would take a year or more per video.

if this user is also profiting from these stolen contents.


No users of Youtube gets paid for content that violates a copyright. Youtube doesn't make any money.

Besides all that, what does this have to do with Ebay, Yahoo and Facebook expressing their interest in the outcome of this case?

soluml




msg:4142310
 9:29 pm on May 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

If Viacom had an issue with video's, they should have sent a takedown notice or something before it got to that ludicrous number. Don't think for a second they didn't sit back and wait for the number to rise a little before taking Google to court. It was even reported that they had their own employees upload content from an offsite location.

Plus who's to say that Viacom didn't profit from the free publicity? Viacom is clearly trying to steal from Google's pockets here and set a dangerous precedent on the web. We, the web site owners, should not be responsible for other people stealing copyrighted material.

hutcheson




msg:4142371
 10:37 pm on May 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

I know everyone here is concerned about this business model, or that one: some people worry about scrapers grabbing their commercial content (and profiting); other people worry about the profitability of sites that accept user contributions.

I don't care about either of those. The buggy-whip manufacturers and the baby's-space-suit manufacturers can go broke together. This isn't about profitability, and the overriding social concerns are so great, so important, so fundamental to a free society, that ... it doesn't matter who has to go broke: Google and Viacom can, and must, both go starve in the streets, if that's what it takes to protect freedom.

I'm concerned about sites like the Internet Archive, and Project Gutenberg, and the University of Newfoundland--all registered nonprofits (and, not coincidentally, all sites that I've contributed significant content to). Now, all of these sites take some care to avoid posting copyrighted material: but, the fact is, it would be trivial for me (or any other user) to slip copyrighted material into a user submission. And it happens (even with well-informed users who did not intend to violate copyright.)

As I say, these sites don't generate income. They survive on government and social support, because they provide such important social benefits. They don't have money for huge payoffs to predatory IP robber barons. They don't have money to hire lawyers to defend themselves, either.

One lawsuit like this, and they would be wiped out. That's why it's so important for EVERYONE to understand that the DMCA gives anyone the right not to have to vett user contributions and take the inherent liability for the inevitable failures. The ONLY way these sites can survive, is for Viacom to lose this suit, big time, so that IP owners (whether robber barons or bandits or peasants or beneficient monks) have the full responsibility for spotting and reporting IP infringement.

And to destroy these sites would be, possibly not like burning the library of Alexandria again, but certainly at least like burning the library of Iona or St. Gall. If Viacom has to die to protect the libraries of the world, then I'll dance on their grave. If the shoe were on the other foot--but it's not, is it? This time around, Google is trying to be Alexandria, not Genseric the Vandal.

If the shoe is ever on the other foot, I'll be happy to dance on Google's grave too.

kaled




msg:4142419
 11:51 pm on May 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

If the objective had been to ensure the judge understood the consequences of any judgement handed down, then this action would have been legitimate. However, it doesn't sound like this is what they attempted to do.

Depending on how the judge thinks, this could backfire spectacularly. For instance, he might now worry that in ruling against Viacom, he could be perceived as weak.

Kaled.

zett




msg:4142561
 5:13 am on May 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

EBay, Facebook, Yahoo, Want An End To Viacom YouTube Lawsuit


Why am I not surprised that THESE guys want the lawsuit to end with a dismissal?

In any case, the decision will have far-fetching implications whatever direction it takes: If Viacom wins, expect a huge rush from content owners to monetize the years of theft that happened to them. If Youtube wins, expect new services coming up that will accept any type of digital content no-matter-what and thus bringing down the value for any digital content to zero (or close to).

wheel




msg:4142809
 12:20 pm on May 28, 2010 (gmt 0)



If someone posts a video, text, file, code, news article, .... what's preventing them from getting sued next?

If every site could be held liable for all user generated content the ramifications are huge.

You don't have to be responsible for USG. You have to be responsible for USG that includes copyright infringement. That's basically theft. And the fact that the ramifications are huge are exactly the reason why this is so important - it's happening everywhere and it needs to stop.

A good analogy is a pawn shop. Pawn shops are responsible for ensuring they're not trafficking in stolen goods - even if it is difficult for them to do so and even though it may 'hurt' their business. Wouldn't it be easier if pawn shops could just accept items from people and then resell them, without being responsible for the previous ownership of the item? Sure it would. Why can't Youtube make sure they're not trafficking in stolen content?

StoutFiles




msg:4142811
 12:25 pm on May 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

Just think how fast Facebook would crumble if you could sue them for being in pictures you didn't authorize. Come on Viacom! Death to Facebook!

thecoalman




msg:4142831
 12:58 pm on May 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

Wheel if I post some obscure copyrighted text here how is WW supposed to determine that it is copyrighted? Have I copy and pasted this post from somewhere else?

Your analogy is pretty good but don't pawn shops simply take the information of the person selling the merchandise to them similar to recording the IP of someone posting? Aren't the cops going to go after the person that sold the merchandise to the pawn shop instead of the pawn shop?

moTi




msg:4142843
 1:21 pm on May 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

websites like youtube could only grow huge because of lax copyright rulings. normally, it doesn't suffice that you take down questionable content not until some user has objected to it. you have to either approve that content before showing it to the masses, moderate it or at least make sure to delete it upon noticing it on your own within a short reasonable time frame. and that's perfectly right.

youtube likes the self-conception as a host for user content: "broadcast yourself". in fact, it's the only way to duck out of their legal responsibilities. but the point is, they are no hosting service. they are a publisher like you and me, they have ads in and around the videos, they make money out of content supply others have contributed to.

does anybody of the youtube fanboys seriously think that you would get away with this kind of practice on your own websites? the legislation, that the website owner is resposible for content shown on his website is perfectly understandable. why should youtube be an exception? because it's so huge and it isn't practicable to approve the huge amount of user submitted material?

i find it funny that so many webmasters saddle themselves with the problems a website like youtube faces. you really think that volume is an argument here? seriously, is that really a problem you should lose sleep over? or is it rather youtube's own problem to get their act together. if they can't handle it, they should rather give a thought to how they can handle it. and don't tell me that it's impossible: have you ever seen p.0.r.n on youtube? they have the massive technical infrastructure - if they really can't they will simply have to limit the amount of user submissions, period. even if that means that you and your friends don't get entertained as they used to with pirated free material from this source.

For many users it seems rather a matter of convenience to hold the status quo as long as possible. you should know it won't last forever. how much that "everything for free" mentality has brainwashed us is absolutely astonishing.

[edited by: moTi at 1:49 pm (utc) on May 28, 2010]

StoutFiles




msg:4142847
 1:31 pm on May 28, 2010 (gmt 0)


does anybody of the youtube fanboys seriously think that you would get away with this kind of practice on your own websites? the legislation, that the website owner is resposible for content shown on his website is perfectly understandable. why should youtube be an exception? because it's so huge and it isn't practicable to approve the huge amount of user submitted material?


This is actually one of my biggest complaints...as a user I love getting free pirated material from PirateTube all day, notably music. As a webmaster though, It's infuriating that I wouldn't have the same benefits of YouTube because I not a huge corporation.

Personally I don't care who wins, as long as someone wins. YouTube wins, I get to keep pirating their material and can freely put whatever on my site as long as it's "user submitted". Viacom wins, my content which is currently completely original becomes more valuable as other sites can't just take it from me and claim "user submitted ignorance". Just give me a ruling, sooner the better. Don't drag this out for years and don't pay people off under the table.


For many users it seems rather a matter of convenience to hold the status quo as long as possible. you should know it won't last forever. how much that "everything for free" mentality has brainwashed us is absolutely astonishing.


It's still going to be a while. When the major sites like YouTube are forced to play by the rules, it'll start to trickle down. But I don't see YouTube changing anytime soon.

ppc_newbie




msg:4142965
 3:08 pm on May 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

If every site could be held liable for all user generated content the ramifications are huge.

The bottom line is that the YouTube owners uploaded copyright material themselves.

There is hard evidence of that.

And all the other rants about "Viacom did this", etc., etc. is just smoke and mirrors to try confusing the issue.

remove




msg:4143015
 4:00 pm on May 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

Oookay, first of all, ads are only shown on YouTube videos that have been confirmed not to be copyrighted, so it's not like YouTube/Google is profiting wholesale off of copyright infringement. Sure, they benefit by getting traffic that's driven by copyrighted videos, but let's be clear about what's really going on here.

Because of the sheer size of their site, it's logistically impossible to hand-moderate each clip that's uploaded. They actually do have a pretty advanced mechanism for user reporting and also for auto-identifying copyrighted materials in videos. It's actually probably more advanced than what exists on any other video-hosting website, technologically speaking.

The DMCA laws, upon which this case hinges, were written in 1998, at a time when it was impossible to imagine a site like YouTube or Facebook, where administrators were not aware of everything its users were doing. User-generated content (beyond perhaps a geocities "guestbook"-- remember those?) simply was not an everyday thing. The law needs to be updated to reflect the modern realities of the internet.

ChanandlerBong




msg:4143037
 4:30 pm on May 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

there was that report that said 80% of YT pageviews came from copyrighted materials - the site sure as heck profited from having that stuff on their site, even if there weren't ads directly framing those videos.

think of it like this...youtube without the copyrighted stuff would basically be like Google Video. Google execs knew there were likely to be huge IP issues when they made the purchase. They knew what they were getting into and they also knew they were skating on thin legal ice.

this thing will get drowned in appeals anyway, whoever wins and loses.

remove




msg:4143041
 4:34 pm on May 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

"this thing will get drowned in appeals anyway, whoever wins and loses."

Now there's something I think we can all agree on. :)

Demaestro




msg:4143187
 7:32 pm on May 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

If the objective had been to ensure the judge understood the consequences of any judgement handed down, then this action would have been legitimate.

However, it doesn't sound like this is what they attempted to do.


How so? Are you guessing or is there something that actually suggests this to be true?

the site sure as heck profited from having that stuff on their site


A lot of people say this but Youtube has yet to post any profit. Yes they generate cash flow but the penny earned from someone watching a video is spend hosting it twice over.

Demaestro




msg:4143189
 7:38 pm on May 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

Come on Viacom! Death to Facebook!


Personally I don't care who wins


as a user I love getting free pirated material from PirateTube all day, notably music.


So you are a thief and you complain about Youtube doing something wrong. You actively admit to being a priate of copyrighted material and you want Youtube to go down for your crime.

Good for you, I hope the people you are ripping off come after you one day and leave the sites that I love alone.

Compared to what you just admit to here and in other posts Youtube is a sanctuary for copyright.

You are the problem not Youtube, you break the rules and you want them to pay the price.

There is something called integrity and to me integrity is what stops you from breaking the rules even when you know you can't get ever caught.

Do you want Youtube to go down because you can't control yourself and so you hope if Youtube is gone then you can stop stealing music?

Like an alcoholic who wants all liquor to be banned so he can stop drinking?

tivrfoa




msg:4143334
 1:30 am on May 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

Even though the US Government denied the Yahoo/Google merger I have long suspected there is a very strong behind the scenes relationship between the two that crosses questionable lines.

I agree with you outland88. I would say that they are close friends. In a recent Google video, the presenter made an example using Yahoo! It was not the first time that I saw Google using Yahoo in their presentations. Okay ... Maybe it was just an example showing how Google services can interact with any site.

badbadmonkey




msg:4144197
 4:37 am on May 31, 2010 (gmt 0)

A lot of people say this but Youtube has yet to post any profit. Yes they generate cash flow but the penny earned from someone watching a video is spend hosting it tw

Money earned is money earned, it makes no difference whether it translates to a profit or loss at the end of the day. You can't rob a bank then get off because the robbery cost you more than the takings. This whole profit argument is a red herring.

zett




msg:4144249
 8:05 am on May 31, 2010 (gmt 0)

The bottom line is that the YouTube owners uploaded copyright material themselves.


You have not read all the documents, right? Youtube founders seem to be aware of copyright infringement going on but apparently asked their teams to continue hosting the content for a while longer (instead of taking it down right away). The question whether or not YT uploaded infringing clips themselves is also still unanswered.

ads are only shown on YouTube videos that have been confirmed not to be copyrighted, so it's not like YouTube/Google is profiting wholesale off of copyright infringement. Sure, they benefit by getting traffic that's driven by copyrighted videos


Exactly. They benefit by making Youtube the #1 destination for ANY video, be it infringing someones copyright or not. Tiny websites would get sued out of business if they did this; Google thanks to their funding and power try to get away with this.

let's be clear about what's really going on here. Because of the sheer size of their site, it's logistically impossible to hand-moderate each clip that's uploaded.


Lovely.

Of course THEY COULD review every clip. They could, for example, hire the millions of jobless people out there. But this would cost them money. So much, in fact, that they could not run Youtube returning a PROFIT (or at least earn some cash). It would be even more loss-making.

They could also create processes that verify uploaders identity and then just point to the uploaders if things go wrong. Again, manual labor and probably stiffling the willingness of users to upload videos.

So what happens is that copyright owners are treated like dirt because some mega-corporation wants to generate a profit. I don't like that idea.

ppc_newbie




msg:4144525
 9:57 pm on May 31, 2010 (gmt 0)

zett:
The bottom line is that the YouTube owners uploaded copyright material themselves.

You have not read all the documents, right? Youtube founders seem to be aware of copyright infringement going on but apparently asked their teams to continue hosting the content for a while longer (instead of taking it down right away). The question whether or not YT uploaded infringing clips themselves is also still unanswered.

Did you read the arstechnia article?
[arstechnica.com...]
"In a July 19, 2005 e-mail to YouTube co-founders Chad Hurley and Jawed Karim, YouTube co-founder Steve Chen wrote: 'jawed, please stop putting stolen videos on the site. We’re going to have a tough time defending the fact that we’re not liable for the copyrighted material on the site because we didn’t put it up when one of the co-founders is blatantly stealing content from other sites and trying to get everyone to see it.'"

Demaestro




msg:4144566
 11:42 pm on May 31, 2010 (gmt 0)

Did you read the arstechnia article?


Those emails are totally irrelevant to the case at hand.

Those emails that are 4-5 years old (the statute of limitations on copyright violations is 3 years)

They all took place prior to Google purchasing Youtube.

These emails do nothing to speak to how things have been run since Google took over. Nor do they speak to the percent of traffic that views original content vs copyrighted content.

I understand that they were doing the wrong thing, but that was 5 years ago. I like to think a lot of these and quickly online in 5 years.

StoutFiles




msg:4144581
 12:32 am on Jun 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

So you are a thief and you complain about Youtube doing something wrong. You actively admit to being a priate of copyrighted material and you want Youtube to go down for your crime.


Alright, you keep bringing this up like it's such a horrible thing, so explain to me why it's so horrible. Google is saying it's ok to watch their videos and embed their videos. However, because I strip the audio from them for my own personal use (not sharing it with others because that would make me liable like YouTube should be) I'm the thief and bad guy?

Good for you, I hope the people you are ripping off come after you one day and leave the sites that I love alone.


I would assume the artists would go after YouTube or the people uploading the videos with their music on them (either one would be fine). How would they know I had the audio stripped when I watched the video? They wouldn't. I guess they could sue everyone who watched the video as well but then this just becomes laughable.

Compared to what you just admit to here and in other posts Youtube is a sanctuary for copyright.


If you're saying that everything that makes it onto YouTube can be downloaded by others with zero problems for the viewer, then yes, that is what I'm saying. No sharing programs out there can make the same claim, YouTube right now is a safe haven for taking copyrighted material.

You are the problem not Youtube, you break the rules and you want them to pay the price.


I am equally for users who upload copyrighted material being able to get sued, they're just as liable if not more liable. Guess what would happen to the future of YouTube(and every other upload site) if this happened? If this ever happens and their is a topic about it I will gladly jump in and hope the uploader loses. However, YouTube getting sued is the next best option.

I enjoy YouTube and all the free files I can get from it. **BUT...I won't be able to profit on a internet where major companies can do whatever they want with copyrighted content. My material will be taken and all I can do about it is file take down notices all day. Also, if I built my own YouTube I would immediately be shutdown for riding the line with copyrighted content because let's face it, YouTube does NOT have to play by the same rules as smaller sites.

There is something called integrity and to me integrity is what stops you from breaking the rules even when you know you can't get ever caught.


Integrity would have me purchasing overpriced files when I can already get them for free without any consequences. I can't even call it stealing if YouTube knows the song is there (their software tells me the song name with an Amazon ad) and chooses NOT to remove it. You can have your integrity, I'll gladly keep my intelligence.

Do you want Youtube to go down because you can't control yourself and so you hope if Youtube is gone then you can stop stealing music?


See **. I want an internet where everyone plays by the same rules, and may the best man win.

I still think you're viewpoints on YouTube are very biased, saying they should win completely based on the facts that you love watching videos on YouTube and I believe you have some of your own videos on their that you made some money from.

I'd still like to hear your viewpoints on how exactly copyright holders should get reimbursed for the damages of having their material uploaded without their permission. Just because it's too hard for YouTube to check DOESN'T make it right, there needs to be a solution to this problem.

This 32 message thread spans 2 pages: 32 ( [1] 2 > >
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