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YouTube Fires Back At Viacom

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the whose-internet-is-it-anyway dept.

The Internet 183

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "As we say in the legal profession, 'issue has been joined' in Viacom v. YouTube. In its answer to Viacom's complaint (PDF), filed Friday, YouTube says Viacom's lawsuit is intended to 'challenge... the protections of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act ("DMCA") that Congress enacted a decade ago to encourage the development of services like YouTube.' It goes on to say that the suit 'threatens the way hundreds of millions of people legitimately exchange information, news, entertainment, and political and artistic expression.'"

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FP? (2, Insightful)

dosius (230542) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565221)

Now YT, bring back xenutv1 (since you cancelled it because of the original xenutv that you cancelled because of a Viacom complaint) and I might consider calling it even.

-uso.

If Viacom wins, you can't go anywhere. (0, Troll)

twitter (104583) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565445)

That's the threat here. If Google can't keep copyright crap off their site no one can. The time has come to decide between free a free press an antiquated notions of copyright. My vote is for free press, so that you can start your own YouTube to share whatever you like with your friends tomorrow.

That about sums it up. (-1, Redundant)

westbake (1275576) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565991)

This is bigger than YouTube and that's what Google is talking about when they mention the DMCA safe harbor.

YouTube is just one site but it's already bigger than Viacom will ever be. The world should be filled with sites like YouTube and nicer. I'd like to see YouTube embrace Ogg Theora format and make it easier to download videos. YouTube might not do that but a competitor may. A free internet looks more like that than it looks like NBC or Viacom [groklaw.net] .

Re:That about sums it up. (0, Offtopic)

willyhill (965620) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566031)

twitter, have you thought about maybe using the sig on all your accounts to alert people to the fact that you reply to yourself? If you insist [slashdot.org] on playing this "dreadfully easy" game, at the very least you could do it with some honesty.

You don't think that anyone who is curious will figure out that all "westbake" has ever done is post comments agreeing with twitter and all your other accounts?

Re:FP? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565841)

Not only bring back xenutv1, but explain to us how the Church of Scientology can open another account after having their first one removed due to harassment and cyber-bullying?

It is of course Google and YT's prerogative to operate their site as they see fit and even violate their own ToS as they have very clearly done here.

But by keeping xenutv1 shut down while allowing a Scientology to open a sponsored account calls into serious doubt how much we can trust YouTube to remain an impartial advocate of free speech in the user-created content industry.

Do No Evil my foot.

Re:FP? (4, Insightful)

catwh0re (540371) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566133)

Basically like this: CoS are paying YT a nice lump of cash to advertise on their site. So YT in return for this cash reinstate the CoS account. Money talks, no business has morals when it comes to cash.

Case in point: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23566981)

The Church of Scientology.

Re:FP? (3, Insightful)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 6 years ago | (#23567125)

no business has morals when it comes to cash.
Sorry, I call bullshit on that one.

It is a sad state that most businesses have obligations to shareholders, but to suggest that all businesses only care about cash must, by extension, mean that this is true of all people.

I'll grant you "most", but the way you (and others like you) are wording this makes it an excuse. It's not, especially for a company which claims "Don't Be Evil." Shame on Google, shame on YouTube, and shame on you for giving them an excuse.

Re:FP? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23567331)

Well, I see it this way...when you watch a vi--[Comments have been disabled for this video]

Re:FP? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565853)

DMCA is getting abused way too much, about time they took a stand, wtf happened to fair use. Hopefully they'll win here then grow some balls to stand up to others including the Church of Scientology who consistently abuse the DMCA and copyright law.

Re:FP? (0, Flamebait)

Vexorian (959249) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566091)

aw give me a break already, so youtube removed an anti scientology link! Ok that's bad, but then again should we really get to see slashdot ramble about that whenever youtube is mentioned? Really...

Re:FP? (1)

Pfhool (744) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566653)

Agreed. It's a shame that YT isn't more able to be transparent about this particular case because it's tangled up with the Viacom suit.

It's time to reconsider the scientology-related takedowns.

The best part was left out... (5, Interesting)

DrEldarion (114072) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565235)

The best part, in my opinion, is that they requested a jury trial. If they get that, Viacom is even more screwed.

Re:The best part was left out... (4, Interesting)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565463)

The best part, in my opinion, is that they requested a jury trial. If they get that, Viacom is even more screwed.
Maybe not. That's an emotional reaction from you. The jury in a recent RIAA case ruled for the faceless record industry monster awarding them obscene amounts against some lady. Unfortunately, while most Slashdotters, other technically savvy people, and many educated folks have a very liberal view of copyrights, most Americans seem to buy into the kind of thing Viacom sells on this issue.

Re:The best part was left out... (4, Interesting)

Kjella (173770) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565869)

Well, from what was reported in the media it sounded like that "lady" did a great job of provoking an emotional response on her own. At any rate, this won't be so much a case on the evidence (it's pretty open what YouTube does) but on law. Expect a few tons of legal opinions on both sides and pretty much a guaranteed appeal to the Supreme Court. Unless the case get sidetracked on more technical issues this is one of the really big deciders on the future of the Internet. I honestly don't think there's any choice here, even if they found in Viacom's favor all that would happen is that the US would be the luddites of the 21st century while YouTube-like services would pop up all over outside the US.

Re:The best part was left out... (4, Insightful)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566035)

At any rate, this won't be so much a case on the evidence (it's pretty open what YouTube does) but on law. Expect a few tons of legal opinions on both sides and pretty much a guaranteed appeal to the Supreme Court.
What I would really expect is a settlement. Viacom has made a mistake here. They usually don't take on people who can fight back. They are going to get destroyed if they don't back down.

Re:The best part was left out... (3, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566489)

What I would really expect is a settlement. Viacom has made a mistake here. They usually don't take on people who can fight back. They are going to get destroyed if they don't back down.
Honestly, I think they're too full of self-importance to even consider it. They're going to get all out there like in the Sony vs Betamax case with statements like The "VCR is to Hollywood what Jack The Ripper was to women" -Jack Valenti, only against YouTube. I really hope they got what it takes to take this all the way and hopefully set a precedent that'll keep them at bay for decades. And I think they're completely oblivious to what they're really walking into.

Re:The best part was left out... (1)

Darkinspiration (901976) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566471)

If Viacom win's then there will be no more hope for media content archive like youtube or flicker in the US.

Re:The best part was left out... (4, Informative)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566003)

I don't think you should generalize based on ONE trial. Especially one that even the Judge has recognized [blogspot.com] was conducted in a flawed manner.

Re:The best part was left out... (2, Insightful)

nametaken (610866) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566293)

I wouldn't say he's generalizing. He said, "Maybe not".

I think the point was that a jury will not always decide what we expect they would, or should, decide.

Re:The best part was left out... (3, Informative)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566369)

I wouldn't say he's generalizing. He said, "Maybe not". I think the point was that a jury will not always decide what we expect they would, or should, decide.
Of course you're right that it's not predictable. But I would say that the close observers of the Capitol v. Thomas [blogspot.com] trial were sure she was going down. So it was predictable to an informed observer.

What I would say about juries is that they usually do the right thing. Which means the RIAA will usually lose.

Note that the RIAA has strictly avoided jury trials, until they had one where everything was in alignment:
a Native American defendant who lived 120 miles away from the courthouse in a different community;
a lawyer who was being held captive in the case;
a few bad facts that could only be explained by a technological expert witness who could talk about zombies, etc.;
defendant having no expert witness;
a judge who was unfamiliar with the controlling copyright law issues.
I could go on and on.

Re:The best part was left out... (3, Insightful)

Venik (915777) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566933)

When a judge is expected to hear a case dealing with a highly technical subject and the judge knows that he will most likely not be able to understand the technological side of the arguments - what is he likely to do? Sometimes I read the various trial documents posted here and I am amazed that there seems to be a great number of judges so well versed in the latest computer technologies to take on such complicated cases. Do they really understand the abracadabra coming from various expert witnesses, or do they just pretend to understand as a face-saving measure? I understand that many judges are well-educated, but a Renaissance Man is hardly a substitute for a network engineer.

Re:The best part was left out... (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566551)

I don't think you should generalize based on ONE trial. Especially one that even the Judge has recognized was conducted in a flawed manner.
The instructions may have been vital for finding her guilty or not guilty, but even if the verdict is wrong because "making available" doesn't equal copyright infringement they awarded almost 10k$/song. Even if the law had specificly stated that making a copyrighted work available is illegal, that's still insane damages compared to retail value based on an emotional response. But as you say, it's one trial.

Flawed, but what of "never used the internet" guy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23566857)

Perhaps not, but I know too many tech illiterate folks to trust them on a jury if it got too complex, like the "I never used the internet before" guy from the case you cited. On the other hand, I've seen *several* judges, even the one who realized his mistake in this case, who have made sensible rulings, even on default cases.

So I'd honestly go for a bench trial if they sued me, unless I had reason to believe that particular judge was unreasonable. But that's just my gut feeling. Many judges have made bad rulings in the past; it's just that I feel they're smarter, on average, than the jury members I'm likely to draw.

That said, I've always been eager to serve on a jury and never gotten the chance. I sure wouldn't mind serving on a case like this. Though I'm not sure if I could get past voire dire? People like me are pretty rare, so if they asked the right questions, they could easily knock me off the jury...

Re:The best part was left out... (2)

zappepcs (820751) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566511)

Those same said Americans bought into all the PR by the Whitehouse about WMD in Iraq. If the MSM tells them something, they believe it. Remember how many of them watch American Idol? Judges are meant to be a bit smarter than that. When it's talk in the break room, everyone is an expert. When you are in court or put in a position of authority, those same said American Idol voters tend to tighten up and try to fly right. This is why you don't see too many complaints about juries being biased etc.

The jury trial is a good thing. I'd like to see the Viacom lawyers find 12 good and true people that really do think like they do without having to pay them to think that way. With a jury trial the jury always has the option of ignoring the law and pronouncing innocence, or rather refusing to convict. Such is the law.

When you have to explain to people what the Internet is, it is just as likely you would have to explain that YouTube videos are supposedly illegal too. 'Why is that illegal' will be what Viacom has to explain, and that may not be so easy as you think.

I would not be too sure about that. (4, Interesting)

Odder (1288958) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565545)

Remember that stupid $250,000 judgement the RIAA managed to get out of a jury? That the jury was stacked full of people who had never used the internet? How they were given improper instructions and bogus theories of "making available"?


Think how much easier it would be to find a jury that knew nothing about YouTube. They would eat up bullshit from Viacom about how Google became popular and made all of it's money off their garbage. They would know even less about slimy operations like Media Defender. Google could show them quirky home videos and free professional videos from the site and tell them that this is what the site was all about but it would be too foreign for the to understand. Society still has expectations that are warped by 90 years of government granted monopoly broadcast.


It will take another generation to heal and that will only happen if this trial goes right.

Re:I would not be too sure about that. (4, Insightful)

DrEldarion (114072) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565571)

The difference here is in the fact that Google has way, way, way better lawyers than the defendant in that case.

Re:I would not be too sure about that. (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565673)

I lol'd at this guy comparing Google's hellspawn king-demon-level Lawyers with some old lady's prison door lawyer.

Re:I would not be too sure about that. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565659)

You already [slashdot.org] posted on this article with one account, why use another one?

Jaimie Thomas case shows a lot. (1, Flamebait)

westbake (1275576) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565687)

The DOJ jumped in to approve of everything the RIAA won in that case [slashdot.org] . It's sickening, but it is probably closer to the average public opinion than Slashdot is. We live in a country that basks in hateful, idiotic talk radio. Most of that toxic sludge is directed and purposeful [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Jaimie Thomas case shows a lot. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565729)

Why didn't you post all this in your initial comment instead of pretending that someone else agrees with you?

Do you really believe that by now everyone doesn't understand the fact that Odder, westbake et. al are all sockpuppets of twitter?

I mean you played this game yesterday [slashdot.org] with the exact same three accounts (of the ten you currently post with). How much time do you figure it will take for people to figure out [slashdot.org] what you're doing? [slashdot.org]

ha ha. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565833)

Does this keep you up at night? Do you suffer from erectile dysfunction? Then you too are a micro-softie and may be working too hard for you own good. Eat a bowl of dicks and wash it down with a tall, hot mug of frothy piss.

Re:ha ha. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23566439)

Fuck twitter, I have a GNU/Linux houshold (2 desktops, 2 laptops, server) and you STILL make me go limp.

I guess you're the anti-viagra. Congratulations.

hi twitter (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23567203)

it's a good thing we know who you are [hillnotes.net] , and not just some random yahoo insulting people behind the anonymity of the internet and pretending some company is out to get you because you've failed at life

It was $222K, but you're correct. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565947)

But I fully agree with you. For myself, I would request that a judge, not a jury, try the case. In the same case you mention with the $222K judgment, the judge has since ordered a retrial because he found that his jury instructions were correct.

That's as honest and commendable a thing as a judge can do, especially because the RIAA "neglected" to inform him of controlling contrary precedent (even though, IIRC, it came from a case they were in).

Alas, my (biased) view based on events so far says that judges are impartial, juries are ignorant, and the RIAA are sleaze.

But, but... they're two big corporations... (1, Funny)

OMNIpotusCOM (1230884) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565737)

...which one do I side with? Which one will get the Slashdot "little guy fighting the big guy" medal of honor? I just... I don't know. On one side you have a multi-billion dollar corporation that seems to want to make money... and then there's the same thing on the OTHER side. Oh noes!

Re:But, but... they're two big corporations... (1)

mrbluze (1034940) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565889)

...which one do I side with?
Maybe it'd be different if it was Viacom versus [porn/skank/goatse]tube or you[porn/skank/goatse].

Re:But, but... they're two big corporations... (3, Interesting)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566071)

But, but... they're two big corporations....which one do I side with? Which one will get the Slashdot "little guy fighting the big guy" medal of honor? I just... I don't know. On one side you have a multi-billion dollar corporation that seems to want to make money... and then there's the same thing on the OTHER side. Oh noes!
In such a situation, why don't we just side with the corporation whose lawyers actually read the statute? (That would be Google).

Re:The best part was left out... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565775)

The best part, in my opinion, is that they requested a jury trial. If they get that, Viacom is even more screwed.
I'd only award it to YT if the judge forced them to display porn again like they did at the start.

Re:The best part was left out... (1)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566989)

I agree. They should be just like Flickr. Have porn, but just hide it by default. Porn rocks! ;)

Re:The best part was left out... (1)

Ramss Morales (13327) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566873)

Here's hoping.

Too bad (5, Insightful)

dunezone (899268) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565237)

Even if Viacom were to win this, they would still be losing out.

Where is the first place I go to find clips of a show? Youtube. After that I head off to google in hopes of finding it somewhere else.

Would I go over to Comedy Centrals website? SpikeTV? MTV? No, because these sites are cluttered with garbage and intrusive AD supported video players. I usually get lost at these sites anyway.

Also, I'm 22, the perfect demographic for these opportunities and you've seem to have alienated us over the years with your garbage websites.

In the end they will simply pay a license fee. (4, Insightful)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565491)

Even if Viacom were to win this, they would still be losing out.

Where is the first place I go to find clips of a show? Youtube. After that I head off to google in hopes of finding it somewhere else.

Remember that Google is no longer (and hasn't been for quite some time) the warm and fuzzy "do no evil" startup it originally was. Now, from a business standpoint, it is like any other multi-national. This is about money, and in the end if Google loses, they will simply pay a license fee.

You can't afford it, neither can Google. (2, Interesting)

gnutoo (1154137) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565903)

Your rights are more important than YouTube. If Google wins, anyone can run a video sharing website the way Google does. If Google loses, no one can. The survival of YouTube and Google are less important than the principle being fought over. A Google that "pays a license fee" the way Napster did will be just as useless as the emasculated Napster was.


Re:You can't afford it, neither can Google. (-1, Troll)

Odder (1288958) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566055)

I'd say this makes Google the good guy again.

Re:You can't afford it, neither can Google. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23567473)

When you reply to your posts (like in this case, "Odder" to "gnutoo"), are you trying to sound like you're talking to someone you don't know? Because if you are, you're not very good at it.

Do you still think people don't know who [slashdot.org] you are? Because if you do, you're completely deluded.

Re:Too bad (1)

troll -1 (956834) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565901)

Would I go over to Comedy Centrals website? SpikeTV? MTV? No, because these sites are cluttered with garbage and intrusive AD supported video players. I usually get lost at these sites anyway.

Mod parent up. After years of failing to get-on-board when it comes to the Internet, these big media companies now throw up crappy sites and expect to draw users away from YouTube. YouTube works because you're only ever a couple of clicks away from watching a video. Yet it took years for a lot of TV channels to figure out it was a good idea to put video links on the front page because it would increase site traffic.

There's old technology old revenue streams (Viacom) and new technology new money (YouTube) and there's probably little doubt which one is gonna win.

Efficient systems tend to dominate in the long run and television is basically a one-way pipe to a dumb terminal.

Re:Too bad (4, Informative)

slarrg (931336) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566125)

The TV company web sites are the absolute worst. Often I want to know something simple, like when new episodes of Heroes will start. I go NBC's site and wade through page after page of useless crap and Flash animation that has no use whatsoever and there is not one word about when new episodes start.

Their sites are always Flash-infested design disasters with absolutely no useful content linking to a schedule that has no information. I'm really not sure who goes to these sites.

Re:Too bad (2, Interesting)

trawg (308495) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566151)

Would I go over to Comedy Centrals website? SpikeTV? MTV? No, because these sites are cluttered with garbage and intrusive AD supported video players. I usually get lost at these sites anyway.
I used to be like that - Daily Show/Colbert Report is hard to come by (legally) in Australia, so I'd head to youtube - until viacom started killing all the youtube links.

I gave up for a while, then realised that all the Daily Show and Colbert stuff is available online from the CC site.

Sure, its a bit lame, and its largely Flash which sucks - I'd certainly like a lightweight nerd-friendly site with just a video player and some clips (Daily Show isn't too bad).

I don't even mind the ads at all - because they mean I can access the content when I want for free.

It's not HOW I'd want to get it - I'd rather download an xvid or something and watching it on my Xbox through XBMC - but it's a pretty good compromise for now - for me at least.

Re:Too bad (1)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 6 years ago | (#23567029)

I want to know who the first big, completely online TV producer is going to be. Just produce the show, sell ads, and offer for download (or maybe sell the ads, do product placement, then produce the show). If the site requires registration, the advertisers have more data available to them than Nielson ratings -- there's no sampling.

Heck, no one will get stinking rich off of it, but there's bound to be money to be made. BT it and have your bandwidth bill cut by two-thirds.

Given the track record of both parties... (5, Funny)

hyades1 (1149581) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565259)

The loser in this case will be whoever has the smallest bladder.

Re:Given the track record of both parties... (1)

mrbluze (1034940) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565825)

Maybe the result will Com-via-You-tube.

Re:Given the track record of both parties... (1)

OMNIpotusCOM (1230884) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566341)

I'm pretty sure the loser will be the first one who mentions Two Girls, One Cup.

Re:Given the track record of both parties... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23566247)

"The loser in this case will be"

Who poop rast?!

One thing is missing (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565303)

Nowhere in that PDF did is see any mention of YouTube users or even the Board of Directors getting to Roshambo [collegehumor.com] the Board of Directors of Viacom. Sure there might be lot's of money one the line, but these execs have their golden parachutes, monetary fines and penalties have very little deterrent effect on that crowd. A video of Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman getting kicked in the nuts would be much better justice served.

Summary of YouTube's response (5, Funny)

TheRedSeven (1234758) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565315)

In response to all your claims:

"No we didn't."

*BSD is Dying (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565343)

It is now official. Netcraft confirms: *BSD is dying

One more crippling bombshell hit the already beleaguered *BSD community when IDC confirmed that *BSD market share has dropped yet again, now down to less than a fraction of 1 percent of all servers. Coming on the heels of a recent Netcraft survey which plainly states that *BSD has lost more market share, this news serves to reinforce what we've known all along. *BSD is collapsing in complete disarray, as fittingly exemplified by failing dead last [samag.com] in the recent Sys Admin comprehensive networking test.

You don't need to be the Amazing Kreskin [amazingkreskin.com] to predict *BSD's future. The hand writing is on the wall: *BSD faces a bleak future. In fact there won't be any future at all for *BSD because *BSD is dying. Things are looking very bad for *BSD. As many of us are already aware, *BSD continues to lose market share. Red ink flows like a river of blood.

FreeBSD is the most endangered of them all, having lost 93% of its core developers. The sudden and unpleasant departures of long time FreeBSD developers Jordan Hubbard and Mike Smith only serve to underscore the point more clearly. There can no longer be any doubt: FreeBSD is dying.

Let's keep to the facts and look at the numbers.

OpenBSD leader Theo states that there are 7000 users of OpenBSD. How many users of NetBSD are there? Let's see. The number of OpenBSD versus NetBSD posts on Usenet is roughly in ratio of 5 to 1. Therefore there are about 7000/5 = 1400 NetBSD users. BSD/OS posts on Usenet are about half of the volume of NetBSD posts. Therefore there are about 700 users of BSD/OS. A recent article put FreeBSD at about 80 percent of the *BSD market. Therefore there are (7000+1400+700)*4 = 36400 FreeBSD users. This is consistent with the number of FreeBSD Usenet posts.

Due to the troubles of Walnut Creek, abysmal sales and so on, FreeBSD went out of business and was taken over by BSDI who sell another troubled OS. Now BSDI is also dead, its corpse turned over to yet another charnel house.

All major surveys show that *BSD has steadily declined in market share. *BSD is very sick and its long term survival prospects are very dim. If *BSD is to survive at all it will be among OS dilettante dabblers. *BSD continues to decay. Nothing short of a miracle could save it at this point in time. For all practical purposes, *BSD is dead.

Fact: *BSD is dying

Re:*BSD is Dying (0, Redundant)

nyu2 (1263642) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565635)

Copypasta, yum. Instead of posting this here, why not post it as a separate scoop? It would waste less time, and more people would read it.

Re:*BSD is Dying (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565753)

You must be new here.

torrentspies of the world vs. youtube (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565375)

the difference -- google's pocketbook.

You F/AIL it (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565401)

Are you GaY [goat.cx]

Viacom's case (5, Insightful)

TheRedSeven (1234758) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565457)

Viacom's case seems to be based on the fact that it's too hard for them to keep up with all the copyright infringing materials posted on YouTube, and therefore YouTube should bear the burden of distinguishing what is and is not infringing. This is just silly. The burden under the DMCA is clearly on the part of the copyright holder, and that's the only thing that makes sense for companies who simply offer services of hosting.

The only other point Viacom has is that YouTube transfers all video into their own 'proprietary' format and then 'copies' it (by which, I assume, they mean "show it on multiple instances of XYZ web browser"--or maybe backups). This is akin to saying that WordPress has its own proprietary format for blogs, by which it copies and distributes information. What a joke!

And things get funny toward the end of the response, too. YouTube denies point #24, which reads:

Defendant YouTube, Inc., is a Delaware corporation with its principal place of business in San Bruno, California.
If you can't even get that right, you may as well just give up!

My prediction (and hope) is that Viacom loses this one quickly and effectively.

Re:Viacom's case (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565611)

Viacom's case seems to be based on the fact that it's too hard for them to keep up with all the copyright infringing materials posted on YouTube, and therefore YouTube should bear the burden of distinguishing what is and is not infringing. This is just silly.
I agree.

Lawsuits like this make me wish that YouTube & similar companies would rollback any filtering or flagging of content that goes beyond the DMCA requirements just to stick it in the **AA's eye.

The only reason YouTube and others have played along with **AA members demands so far is on the off chance that YouTube & Co. can license content (or some exclusive hosting agreement) from them.

Re:Viacom's case (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565679)

And things get funny toward the end of the response, too. YouTube denies point #24, which reads:

Defendant YouTube, Inc., is a Delaware corporation with its principal place of business in San Bruno, California.
If you can't even get that right, you may as well just give up!

My prediction (and hope) is that Viacom loses this one quickly and effectively.
Point #24 is actually correct.

Youtube can both be incorporated in Delaware, and have as its principle place of business another US state. Just because you're incorporated in Delaware, as most US corporations are for legal liability reasons, doesn't mean that's where your "principal" (legal term) place of business is maintained.

Re:Viacom's case (1)

justinlee37 (993373) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566651)

But do you actually know it to be correct, or are you just saying that it could be correct?

Re:Viacom's case (1)

zolltron (863074) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565733)

And things get funny toward the end of the response, too. YouTube denies point #24, which reads:

Defendant YouTube, Inc., is a Delaware corporation with its principal place of business in San Bruno, California.
If you can't even get that right, you may as well just give up!
Ironically, in the very next paragraph (paragraph 25) YouTube says, "Defendants admit that YouTube is a Delaware limited liability company with its principle place of business in San Bruno, California". Brilliant.

Corp != LLC (1)

TimSSG (1068536) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565855)

I think the point is that "Delaware corporation" is not an "Delaware limited liability company". Tim S

Re:Viacom's case (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565807)

oh look another idiot.

"Defendant YouTube, Inc., is a Delaware corporation with its principal place of business in San Bruno, California.

If you can't even get that right, you may as well just give up!"

Deleware is very pro business. Where your corporation is registered and where you operate are two entirely different things.

Re:Viacom's case (4, Informative)

compro01 (777531) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565983)

Yes, but they're not a Delaware corporation [wikipedia.org] . they're a limited liability company [wikipedia.org] located in Delaware. Differant things.

Re:Viacom's case (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23566821)

No you're wrong. The words corporation and company can be interchanged. Anyone using common sense knows that.

Roget's II: The New Thesaurus

Main Entry: company

Part of Speech: noun

Definition: A commercial organization.

Synonyms: business, concern, enterprise, establishment, firm, house, corporation

Source: Roget's II: The New Thesaurus, Third Edition by the Editors of the American Heritage® Dictionary.

Copyright © 2003, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Re:Viacom's case (2, Informative)

compro01 (777531) | more than 6 years ago | (#23567069)

Common English =/= Legal English.

Company and corporation are two different terms legally, even though they're synonyms in usual speech, as you point out with your dictionary quote.

A limited liability company is not incorporated. It's somewhat like a cross between a corporation (Limited liability for the owners, as the name states) and a partnership (usually multiple owners), but there is no juristic person as there is with a corporation.

Re:Viacom's case (2, Insightful)

Score Whore (32328) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566083)

Viacom's case seems to be based on the fact that it's too hard for them to keep up with all the copyright infringing materials posted on YouTube, and therefore YouTube should bear the burden of distinguishing what is and is not infringing.


I'm curious. Let's say ChoicePoint decides they'd like to do more business. So what they decide to do is establish a website called ReportOnConsumers.com. Where anyone can upload a document about anyone. Of course they want to make it possible for people to properly police their information and control who gets access to it, so they provide a nice email where all you have to do is drop them a line proving that you're the person identified in a particular posting and they'll go ahead and remove it. Of course anyone can reupload it immediately. All you have to do to control it is continually review every posted report and submit a proper takedown request.

Still think like the idea of the responsibility being yours?

Re:Viacom's case (1)

enoz (1181117) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566991)

I almost spent some effort trying to argue against your strawman, but I digress.

Your argument is only relevant to this case if you published your own 'report' on the internet/tv/etc in the first place. Then it sure is your responsibility and your responsibility alone to police every instance that it is republished.

Copyright may be granted by default, but it is certainly not enforced on your behalf.

Wait. (1)

Ortega-Starfire (930563) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565507)

The DMCA is not the root of all evil? I'm so confused...

Re:Wait. (1)

Tubal-Cain (1289912) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566237)

It is, but it's a double-edged sword sometimes.

Is the goal destruction of the DMCA safe harbor? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565533)

I've been increasingly concerned about this in the past, but this suit seems to add significant evidence to my thesis.

As I remember, the DMCA has a safe harbor provision for "platform" and "network" providers that, basically says - as long as you don't exercise control over the content on your platform/network, you cannot be sued for infringement, the plaintiff must sue the one who uploads/transfers using your service.

However, YouTube has entered into agreements and instituted technology to pre-emptively purge it's "platform" of copyrighted material - Therefore, they are no longer protected by the safe harbor.

I would hazard a guess that those network providers who implement the pre-emptive content blocking of copyrighted materials being shared by peer-to-peer filesharing will eventually also be targeted.

It's interesting that the *AA are insisting on pre-emptive content filtering and the network and platform providers are giving in -- not realizing that in doing so, they cease to be protected...

IMHO - The *AA knows they soon will no longer be able to go after end users - the handwriting is on the wall. So they are setting up the next wave of lawsuits - network and platform providers. Since these are typically corporations that will simply pay to get rid of a lawsuit, it's easy money.

But in order to sue them (or have a reasonable threat), they have to make sure the safe harbor provision does not apply. As soon as a network or platform provider begins to filter the traffic or content, the safe harbor doesn't apply and they're fair game.

Re:Is the goal destruction of the DMCA safe harbor (1)

timothyf (615594) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566001)

Hmm. Could be true... but then, if they decide to use that ploy, they'll lose all the 'goodwill' that these services spent in trying to give them better tools to fight copyright infringement in the first place. These service providers aren't going to give up and die if they can help it, and they've got fairly deep pockets too. So, what happens? They completely backtrack on all of the tools and filtering and the *AA goes back to square one.

Slashdot = idiots (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23566065)

Commenting anonymous so the group-think drones don't karma-kill me for saying something they dislike.

The notion that filtering somehow invalidates the Title 17 Section 512 copyright infringement safe harbor is complete and utter bullshit which has gained inertia on Slashdot only by sheer repetition.

Please cite the exact line of the statue which you believe creates this effect before repeating this nonsense again.

The protection provided for service providers by OCILLA for service providers is damn near absolute, so long as they don't have actual knowledge of the infringement and so long as they comply with the takedown procedure. There is absolutely no requirement for neutrality or lack of filtering.

Viacom is arguing, among other things(*), that when the procedure is combined with anonymous users and the enormous scale of sites like Youtube that copyright is effectively nullified as an unintended side effect of how YouTube is complying with the takedown procedures, and that congress did not intend to nullify copyright. They will probably win that argument, because it's clearly true.

(*Viacom also argues that YouTube had actual knowledge of the infringement, that they are a publisher and not just a service provider because they transcode, thumbnail, and integrate the videos into their own pages rather than just make them available for download... Either of which would cause YouTube to lose the safe harbor.)

Re:Slashdot = idiots (3, Insightful)

Vexorian (959249) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566157)

I find it amusing you simultaneously think slashdot = idiots yet you apparently worry a lot of about your karma...

Viacom is arguing, among other things(*), that when the procedure is combined with anonymous users and the enormous scale of sites like Youtube that copyright is effectively nullified as an unintended side effect of how YouTube is complying with the takedown procedures, and that congress did not intend to nullify copyright.

So, they are basically saying they don't have enough control of the internet, and that such situation should be declared as unfair by the congress, so that everyone making a site with thumbnails has to totally screen out every thing submitted by any user for copyright infringement.

So, copyright is not enough to them, they also want the world to police their own copyright for them.

They will probably win that argument, because it's clearly true.

Besides of how "true" it "clearly" is, the fact remains that the entertainment industry is spoiled and cannot stand a channel of distribution they cannot control, so they are wrong in my book. Also, what the heck? How is youtube or any web site supposed to know something is copyrighted? It should seriously be the author's responsibility to protect his own imaginary property.

(512(c)(1)(B)), also (512(c)(1)(A)(2)) (4, Informative)

Software Geek (1097883) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566491)

Viacom alleges in their complaint that YouTube receives a financial benefit directly attributable to infringing activity (via add revenue generated from the infringing material)

Also, they allege that infringing activity is apparent, given YouTube's ability to filter out other things (pr0n and the copyrighted material of it's partners.)

Each of these allegations appears to be directed at voiding the safe harbor provision in the law.

Here are the relevant parts of the safe harbor provision (512(c)(1))

(1) In general. - A service provider shall not be liable for monetary relief, or, except as provided in subsection (j), for injunctive or other equitable relief, for infringement of copyright by reason of the storage at the direction of a user of material that resides on a system or network controlled or operated by or for the service provider, if the service provider -
(A)(i) does not have actual knowledge that the material or an activity using the material on the system or network is infringing;
(ii) in the absence of such actual knowledge, is not aware of facts or circumstances from which infringing activity is apparent; or
(B) does not receive a financial benefit directly attributable to the infringing activity, in a case in which the service provider has the right and ability to control such activity; and

If so, couldn't You Tube / Google just say ... (3, Interesting)

Ungrounded Lightning (62228) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566121)

The DMCA has a safe harbor provision for "platform" and "network" providers that, basically says - as long as you don't exercise control over the content on your platform/network, you cannot be sued for infringement, the plaintiff must sue the one who uploads/transfers using your service.

However, YouTube has entered into agreements and instituted technology to pre-emptively purge it's "platform" of copyrighted material - Therefore, they are no longer protected by the safe harbor. ... As soon as a network or platform provider begins to filter the traffic or content, the safe harbor doesn't apply and they're fair game.


If so, couldn't they just say this:

"OK, we'll turn off the filtering starting immediately and discuss whether there are contract violations with our contract partners as a separate matter from this case. We ask the court to rule that the safe harbor is clearly in effect once the filtering has stopped and limit this case to the period when the filtering was occurring. If plaintiffs don't agree and do want us to continue filtering pending the resolution of this case, we ask them to request that the filtering remain in effect and either waive any claims that the filtering invalidates any safe harbor provision of the DMCA or waive any damages for the period from now until the resolution of the case should it be determined that the safe harbor provisions would immunize us and filtering invalidates them."

Re:Is the goal destruction of the DMCA safe harbor (1)

davek (18465) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566165)

To boil down the parent post, is this fight for real?

Is this really some corporate-backed entity trying to chip away at some of the self-destructive provisions of the DMCA? Will it attempt to establish the "meaning" of media in this age? Or will it be an out of court backstab leaving nothing changed and more and more people classified as criminals?

-dave

Re:Is the goal destruction of the DMCA safe harbor (2, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566371)

Well, we'll see how that argument spins as I think YouTube will play that as "We have gove above and beyond what's required by law at the insistance of copyright holders, yet they demand the impossible. While this process is imperfect, removing it because of increased liability would cause a massive surge in piracy which would hurt the plaintifs. Causing damage to themselves in order to recover it through the legal system is an abuse of the legal system and should not be permitted". I think Viacom would hit a brick wall very quickly if they tried as everyone would drop their filtering on the spot, with very little sympathy towards the copyright holders from anyone.

"legitimate" (1)

chainLynx (939076) | more than 6 years ago | (#23565577)

"Legitimate" seems like a word that both sides in this case (and in most "intellectual property" disputes) want to claim as their own. The person saying it attempts to sidestep the entire debate of what makes a use "legitimate" (for whom, how, etc.) and hopes that the audience just assumes that he objectively knows what a legitimate use is (and agrees with his unspoken definition). Of course, those questions go to the heart of the real issue.

ViaCom Trawling? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23565677)

Correct me if I'm wrong (not uncommon), but is ViaCom actually arguing that they should be able to surreptitiously upload content to YouTube, and then sue YouTube for hosting illegal content, since it's not provably there "with permission"? Barring YouTube's (highly unlikely) ability to prove ViaCom's uploading of a piece of content, how would YouTube otherwise defend against such trawling for awards?

Re:ViaCom Trawling? (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566059)

By the fact that YouTube is not the "copyright police" and that if Viacom wants to take down a video they have to tell YouTube that and not expect YouTube to take down all Viacom videos.

Re:ViaCom Trawling? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23566473)

But are they not arguing in this case that the safe harbo(u)r provisions should not apply?

Tiptoety is a fucking bastard (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23566137)

Tiptoety is a fucking bastard who beats up little girls with downs syndrome and likes to smash babies skulls out with hammers. He should have his penis dipped in BOILING oil!

Youtube Scares Viacomm Shitless (3, Insightful)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566233)

It's not their copyrighted material that scares them. What frightens them is the potential for any person to create content which people find entertaining. More entertaining, in fact, than anything Viacomm can possibly come up with. It's a means of media distribution that they don't and can't control, and it frightens them. They would be quite happy if it just disappeared, and they're going to mount any attack they can to make that happen.

First the lawsuits will start. I suspect those will fail. The next thing that happens after that is that someone will try to create a competing web site that completely misses the point and puts restrictions on users uploading content and tries to add DRM and advertising to any videos that do get uploaded. Then some gigantic media conglomerate will try to buy and bury Youtube. If all that doesn't work, they'll likely just give up and live with it. Not many companies make it past all that harassment though.

Re:Youtube Scares Viacomm Shitless (4, Interesting)

cdrguru (88047) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566381)

If your idea of entertainment is "Ow, My Balls", YouTube is probably all you have ever been looking for.

What YouTube offers is the distribution of entertainment they did not create. Clearly it is distributing Viacom content as well as that from lots of other sources as well. Viacom isn't going to be able to control this and is likely doomed in the long run.

Of course, "entertainment" is going to be of the "Ow, My Balls" caliber pretty soon. I do not see an upside to this. It is not freedom for the masses, it is public theft of private property. The result will be the elimination of the private property from being created.

Re:Youtube Scares Viacomm Shitless (2, Insightful)

JoshJ (1009085) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566847)

This is /., so:
If I steal your car, it is wrong because you no longer have it.
If I press a button and make a copy of your car; you still have it and are in no way harmed.

Re:Youtube Scares Viacomm Shitless (1)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566407)

More entertaining, in fact, than anything Viacomm can possibly come up with.
I see you haven't watched many youtube videos.

Re:Youtube Scares Viacomm Shitless (2, Interesting)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 6 years ago | (#23567213)

Sure I am! Pretty much every depraved sexual act you can imagine, someone's doing on youtube. Take any concept that should not be in any way associated with sex (Care Bears, puppies, Dolphins, Men dressed as nuns,) add the word "Sex" and hit search. Then after you get done washing your brain... sorry, what was my point again? Oh yeah, Viacomm just can't compete with that shit, that's right...

Just one more reason.... (2, Insightful)

joocemann (1273720) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566383)

...for us to establish serious penalties for invalid litigious activity. The fact that everyone is suing everyone, for money, sickens me, and is an extreme waste of our judicial resources. Add traffic violations that are not in line with the 'intent' (and thus the constitutional explanation for the law), and you've got a glaring systematic problem.

No Big Deal (2, Insightful)

jgc7 (910200) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566507)

The lawsuit is for $1 billion... which is a whopping %0.6 of GOOG's market valuation. Win or lose, it is not all bad for google. If they lose, their competitors will get shutdown because of the legal precedence; they will be the last man standing. If they win, they get to continue as usual.

I don't think Viacom stands a chance... they need to show "willful, intentional, and purposeful" infringement. The case rests on data as a percentage basis, how many views turned out to be infringing content? 60%? 30%? 10%? 2%? IMO, if the answer is 60%, Viacom should win. If it is 2%, they should lose.

What nonsense (1)

Slotty (562298) | more than 6 years ago | (#23566587)

Viacom's complaint is insane. Hopefully it doesn't go to a jury. A jury is filled with stupid people who are not intelligent enough to tie their shoelaces. I really don't know why the US allows civil proceedings to be heard by a jury of peers at least a judge would have some level of intelligence. Reading viacom's submission I'd believe that only copyright material is available on YouTube and nothing else at all.

Re:What nonsense (2, Insightful)

cswiger (63672) | more than 6 years ago | (#23567057)

"I really don't know why the US allows civil proceedings to be heard by a jury of peers at least a judge would have some level of intelligence."

The founders had enough experience with corrupt judges to not blindly trust them....

Yu0 fai7 it!? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23566887)

I have a 7ife to
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