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How the DMCA Protects YouTube

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the that's-gootube dept.

144

bartle writes "Slate is running an article that analyzes the question of how much legal trouble Google may get in having bought YouTube. Not much, according to the author, and thanks seem to go to a provision in the DMCA that may provide more protection for YouTube than torrent services." From the article: "But what about Mark Cuban's copyright argument? Why isn't YouTube in trouble in the same way Napster and Grokster were? The first difference, as indicated, is that Napster simply wasn't covered by the 512 safe-harbor law, and YouTube is. Napster wasn't "hosting" information at the direction of its users, but rather providing a tool for users to find and download predominantly infringing content. It may sound odd that Napster gets in more trouble for helping you find illegal stuff than YouTube does for actually hosting it. But that's the law and why YouTube should really, really thank its friends at Bell."

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Forgive me for asking but... (3, Insightful)

twofidyKidd (615722) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601534)

Does viewing/listening to copyrighted content constitute distribution?

Re:Forgive me for asking but... (4, Funny)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601576)

Who the hell knows? Ask 5 lawyers and you'll get 5 different answers.

Re:Forgive me for asking but... (1)

Firehed (942385) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603090)

How are there five ways to answer a yes-or-no question?

Re:Forgive me for asking but... (5, Funny)

MykeAbner (913551) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603118)

They're lawyers.

Re:Forgive me for asking but... (5, Funny)

bursch-X (458146) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603136)

1. Yes
2. No
3. It depends
4. Maybe
5. Profit!

errr, forget it.

Re:Forgive me for asking but... (2, Insightful)

ricree (969643) | more than 7 years ago | (#16604202)

Five different lawyers may give you five different answers, but in all five cases "Profit!" is what they're actually thinking.

Re:Forgive me for asking but... (1)

cultrhetor (961872) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601594)

No. Making it available so that others may view/listen constitutes distribution.

Sure about that? (2, Interesting)

raehl (609729) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602088)

If someone hosts a website of songs, and I go to that website and I download them, then the RIAA may very well come after me.

So if I go to a website with videos, and I download those, what's the difference?

What if I watch a video which includes a song? Am I just as guilty of infringement as if I had downloaded the song only?

Actually, there is a difference, in one case you keep a copy of the material locally and in YouTube's case you don't. But if you download a video from YouTube to your hard drive that has a song on it, I can't see how you're any less guilty of infringement than if you had just downloaded the song alone.

Re:Sure about that? (1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602394)

Instead of arguing the merits of this particular case, we should be using this opportunity to write our representatives and tell them it's stupid shit like this that makes the DMCA a joke and why it should, at the very least, be re-written.

Re:Sure about that? (2, Insightful)

Typhon100 (641308) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602728)

Huh? After reading TFA, I like section 512. Sounds to me like this one of the few GOOD things that the DMCA has in it. If hosting companies were held responsible for everything on users uploaded, it would stifle virtually all the creativity the web has given birth to.

Re:Sure about that? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16602430)

Maybe. But, the problem is that you are trying to apply human logic to law.
It doesn't work like that. Law is about power (people with guns) telling you
(the little people) what you can and cannot do. All this talk about what is best
for "society" is merely the smoke and mirrors that lends an air of legitimacy to
the psychopathic agenda.

Don't try and rationalise with lawyers, you will do no better than Alice in Wonderland.
The lawyers will beat you every time because they define the rules of the game
as they go.

This is the 21st Century. Everything you do is now either illegal or potentially illegal
and you are deliberately kept in the dark about exactly what the law is. Nobody
knows anymore. It's whatever your great Emprorer Bush wishes it to be that day.
The "peoples rule of law" is exhausted, the courts and judges have proved themselves
corrupt and unworthy of respect. Democracy is finished. The only way you will ever know
fairness and justice again is when you have the balls to rise up and take back what is yours.

Re:Sure about that? (2, Insightful)

gregleimbeck (975759) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602694)

Ah, yes, Slashdot. Where a discussion of internet copyright issues invariably ends up in a call for coup d'etat.

Re:Sure about that? (1)

tajmorton (806296) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602764)

If someone hosts a website of songs, and I go to that website and I download them, then the RIAA may very well come after me.

No, IIRC, they have never sued someone for downloading songs, only for distributing them/making them available on a P2P network. They will, however, sue the owner of the site which you downloaded them from.

Of course, when you "download" over a P2P network, you are always distributing them to other people (that's what makes the network tick).

Now, though, I'm sure I'll get a million replies with links to articles about how the RIAA sued someone for downloading from an FTP server...

Re:Sure about that? (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602864)

Of course, when you "download" over a P2P network, you are always distributing them to other people (that's what makes the network tick).
Um, no, that's not true. On P2P networks, its often quite possible to download something without distributing it. Doing this exclusively, of course, is considered bad form.

Re:Sure about that? (1)

cultrhetor (961872) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603976)

The question was about "distribution." Distribution is not "retrieving," or "downloading." The site owner is distributing copyrighted material, you are stealing it.

Re:Forgive me for asking but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16601602)

Does viewing/listening to copyrighted content constitute distribution?

Of course not. Displaying it to others does though.

Re:Forgive me for asking but... (1)

takeya (825259) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602644)

When you get a bottle of prescription medication it says not to distrubte it... I think that consuming it does not count.

Re:Forgive me for asking but... (1)

agentcdog (885108) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603434)

IANAL.
The RIAA does NOT sue people for downloading songs illegally. They sue them for distributing them. They look for songs that people are sharing. They download a few in order to prove that they are, indeed, the real thing. Then they sue for distribution. I have never seen news of a lawsuit by the RIAA for downloading.
If I am incorrect, please point me to where I can read about what is going on.

in short.... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16601542)

Napster/etc provided no real service apart from allowing users to host pirated music - whereas YouTude adds some real value.

True (4, Insightful)

sterno (16320) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601998)

The thing that always hurt Napster was that nobody could go to Napster's system and legitimately say that it was being used for anything other than piracy. There was a handful of legal content on there, burried in a sea of pirated files. On the other hand, YouTube is mostly non-copyrighted material.

Sure we get excerpts of the occasional TV show, clips from Olberman, and Stewart, but it's not wholesale copying and the quality is twelth rate. Nobody's going to decide to not buy a DVD of a film because they watched it on YouTube. So really I don't see YouTube having a problem. They take down content when notified that it infringes copyright and they move on.

Re:True (5, Informative)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602390)

On the other hand, YouTube is mostly non-copyrighted material.

Attack of the pedant: YouTube is mostly copyrighted (since in the U.S. everything is copyrighted automagically) material hosted and distributed with permission of the author (implied by them uploading it to YouTube). But I know what you meant, non-infringing material.

Re:True (1)

Boogaroo (604901) | more than 7 years ago | (#16604062)

Honestly, what I see on YouTube IS mostly infringing works.

Seriously, having a thousand Dragonball Z montages with Coldplay or some other band is simply creative copyright infringement. Funny commercials, yeah, copyright infringement, if they weren't put there by the ad company.

Even half of the user generated content probably wasn't put up by the copyright holders. It was put up by someone who thought that it was a cool video. They didn't ask if they could put it up. Sure, it's not commercial, but it's still copyright infringement.

Search Engine?? (1)

Opticalsky (785289) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601546)

Wouldn't a search engine be considered a tool? Last I checked, YouTube has a search engine.

The real reason is.. (5, Insightful)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601548)

the daughters of senators and district attorneys and other rich people tell their parents that YouTube is great. Napster was a little too hard for the estemed gentleman's little princess to figure out, but YouTube isn't.

Re:The real reason is.. (1)

JazzXP (770338) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601624)

I'd say there's a lot of truth in that. Something that is nice and accessible (think VCR's) seem to be ok when it comes to copyright infringement, but when it's something that isn't properly understood (think BitTorrent) by the old fuddy duddy senators, it must be bad. It seems to me that when the majority of the population is breaking a particular law (such as copyright infringement), there is something wrong with that law.

Re:The real reason is.. (1)

riff420 (810435) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601826)

It seems to me that when the majority of the population is breaking a particular law (such as copyright infringement), there is something wrong with that law. I'd agree with you, but I'm busy packing a bowl. I'm sure I'll agree, afterwards, if I can remember what it was we were talking about.

Re:The real reason is.. (1)

pudro (983817) | more than 7 years ago | (#16604068)

What's with the negative moderation? It was a little silly, but he was making a valid point about something being wrong with a law that a vast amount of Americans (though maybe not the majority) are breaking.

Re:The real reason is.. (2, Insightful)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601964)

Nah. You're being too democratic, ya gotta be more Nietzsche [marxists.org] . Laws are created and enforced by the people with the power. If a law isn't in the interest of the ruling class then it will be ignored.. until such time that it actually starts affecting them, then it will be brutally enforced. No matter how much we might care to think so, few of us living in societies where the majority control the power. We pretend that's the case, but unfortunately the majority of us are more than willing to hand the power over to whoever doesn't rock the boat too much.

Re:The real reason is.. (1)

deesine (722173) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603208)

The majority of the population is breaking copyright law? Says who (link)?

Re:The real reason is.. (1)

Infonaut (96956) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603022)

the daughters of senators and district attorneys and other rich people tell their parents that YouTube is great. Napster was a little too hard for the estemed gentleman's little princess to figure out, but YouTube isn't.

That's right, because district attorneys and "other rich people" (whatever that means in the context of the law) make decisions on the basis of what their "little princesses" tell them. Doubtless that's how lawyers, judges and "other rich people" decide all kinds of things, like what music to listen to ("Justin Timberlake is, like, *such* a good artist!") and what brokerage firms they should use.

Re:The real reason is.. (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603278)

No-one is going to pass (or enforce) a law that puts their own children in jail, end of story.

And are you trying to suggest that we're not ruled by the rich?

WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16601580)

I've not RTFA but...

Napster wasn't "hosting" information at the direction of its users, but rather providing a tool for users to find and download predominantly infringing content.


Does youtube really lack a search engine? How about google? No, I'm not going to RTFA because the summary was enough stupid for me today.

Re:WTF? (2, Insightful)

91degrees (207121) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601666)

I think its the "predominantly" bit that makes the difference. Most of the stuff on Youtube is legitimate. Most of the stuff on napster was infringing copyright.

The other part is that the search engine is just a small aspect of the entire site,whereas it was a key part of Napster.

Re:WTF? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16601848)

It's a totally bogus argument, someone searching for infringing content will find "predominantly infringing content". All I get out of this is that the Napster ruling was wrong and that yougoog have a PR agency at work trying to put some distance between the 2 in themselves and Napster in the eyes of potential litigants.

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16602062)

Most of the stuff on Youtube is legitimate. Most of the stuff on napster was infringing copyright. Not true. Everything on YouTube infringes copyright. Copyright, by definition, exists the moment anybody creates anything. Now, it is true that most of the stuff on YouTube might not be CORPORATE copyright. It might mostly be COMMON USER copyright. But that does not make any of the material any less copyrighted.

Re:WTF? (1)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602152)

if a user makes and uploads a video, it's not infringing for youtube to make that video available.

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16602154)

Are you saying if I upload something to a website, even after agreeing to their terms of use, I can sue them for copyright infringement? I think not. Now if I created something and did not give them permission to put it online, that would be another story.

Re:WTF? (1)

kill-1 (36256) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602760)

No, you don't have a copyright on anything you create. There's always a certain threshold of originality [wikipedia.org]

Re:WTF? (2, Interesting)

Artifakt (700173) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603514)

'infringes'

"I do not think that word means what you think it means." - Inego Montoya

Everything on YouTube has a copyright.* Since most of it was posted by the copyright holder, that holder has in effect given permission to distribute, so there is no infringement.

* even this is a maybe - there may just possibly be a few film clips so old their copyright's have expired.

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16604494)

please get the quote right. Vecini: "INCONCIEVABLE" Inigo Montoya: "You keep saying that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16604868)

please get the spelling right. Vizzini: "INCONCEIVABLE" ..."I before E except after C" (most of the time!)

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16603554)

kill-1: Yes of course.. there is a threshold. But I think most, if not all, videos on youtube meet that criterion. Most of it is stupid, but it is still "original" creative work. The videographer captures scenes, edits them, etc. That's all copyrightable, even if it sucks, even if it is just video of me dancing around my apartment. Or are you saying that only the most talented among us deserve to be granted copyright, and the massive remainder of the population do not have this right?

Who's on first? What's on Second? (4, Interesting)

pilgrim23 (716938) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601582)

You mention Youtube...posts copyright material, safe harbor provison...Grokster, Napster; no Safe Harbor protection, for posting copyright materials and then you mention Torrent sites that post....wait. a Torrent is the copyright material itself? I thought it was merely a seed for a server-less system, that is a table, an index. Now I am confused. Is an index part of someone's copyright material now?

Re:Who's on first? What's on Second? (2, Interesting)

cptgrudge (177113) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602124)

One thing I've always wondered about. Why wouldn't the RIAA/MPAA just hire a third party to cull IP addresses from the trackers by joining the swarm? They can record the IP addresses that upload data. Why would they need to bother piratebay (or whatever tracker site) to get the IP addresses? I mean, you could get have a bittorrent client log every single IP that uploads data to you. Blow the data away and start again. Leave it on for weeks, and you'll get thousands of IP addresses from the more popular torrents.

Since they are now part of this method, would the act of their agent joining the download swarm (and consequently uploading the content) be an implicit admission that a torrent is an accepted distribution channel of the copyrighted material? Or is the fact that it's only little chunks of the data from any individual host that poses the problem? Really, who cares about the tracker? You can get the IP addresses of people through much more direct means.

Please, someone tell me why you can't use this method.

Re:Who's on first? What's on Second? (3, Interesting)

bartle (447377) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602398)

Please, someone tell me why you can't use this method.

HBO did use this method [wordpress.com] not too long ago. In my opinion it's a lot more effective than just about any other. HBO doesn't even have to upload anything - they just use custom peers to download a packet from each client they come across in a popular swarm. Then they can just show in court how that piece can be mathematically proven to be part of an episode of their show.

I should point out, to HBO's credit, they haven't yet gone sue happy even though their technique seems much more likely to stand up in court. They're just firing a lot of warning shots.

Re:Who's on first? What's on Second? (1)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602606)

I'd like to point out that all their client would be able to prove is that you had that one packet on your computer, and not the whole file =) Download the whole file, and then you can prove the whole file was there. Technically, I can seed a whole sea of leachers in a swarm with just that one packet, with other seeders in the swarm dishing out the rest of the file.

Re:Who's on first? What's on Second? (2, Insightful)

Typhon100 (641308) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602804)

While that's true from a technical perspective, I would be surprised if that held up in court. While you may not be sharing the entire file yourself, you are at the very least taking part in the "scheme". A smart judge (and most of them ARE smart) would cut through the technical crap that he probably didn't totally understand (or care about), and go after the heart of the matter - which is that you're sharing copyrighted content.

Re:Who's on first? What's on Second? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16603464)

>and go after the heart of the matter - which is that you're sharing copyrighted content.

Yes, but fair use dictates a small amount of copyrighted material may be shared for certain purposes. A good lawyer can convince the judge that the 0.01% of the file they managed to download was nothing more than the same thing a copy of a page from a library book is -- a legitimate, fair use sample of the material.

I expect this is why HBO is not bothering to SUE anyone -- instead they are just using this to rough up folks that annoy them. Absolutely disgraceful. It's only one step away from the mafia shaking you down for protection money.

Lucky for me, where I live HBO is illegal to receive. Good luck proving any lost profit here...

Re:Who's on first? What's on Second? (3, Insightful)

Artifakt (700173) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603666)

In fact, precident for this is well established. Way before digital media, people tried to get around copyright law by distributing films divided by a new intermission, films that had a minute here and there trimmed, films where some wide angle shots were re-edited for close ups, audio tapes with one song missing from a whole album, etc. and claiming these weren't violations. The last such arguements got shot dowm by about 1955. The 1978 Berne treaty on copyrights has specific clauses where they define civil violations as including "either all, or any substantial part of" the item, probably just to reinforce this principle. I'm not sure about what''s actually spelled out in the 1998 treaty, but it references Berne enough that the details probably don't really matter.
      Applying this would simply take a judge looking at these precedents and deciding that any part big enough to help another person get the whole work counted as a substantial part. With existing decisions against a group of infringers who duplicated each reel of a 10 real film in separate film labs in multiple countries, before shiping the reels individually into India, where they were finally put together, as precidents, that's likely to be a no-brainer for any half-way competent judge.

Re:Who's on first? What's on Second? (1)

Alef (605149) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602758)

they just use custom peers to download a packet from each client they come across in a popular swarm. Then they can just show in court how that piece can be mathematically proven to be part of an episode of their show.

But is this enough? All they can really prove is that you have distributed that particular piece, which in itself probably is completely worthless.

Re:Who's on first? What's on Second? (1)

Firehed (942385) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603178)

Well, aside from how insanely easy it is to spoof an IP log (not that they did, but rather that you can't know beyond a reasonable doubt that they didn't), I think a single packet, or even a single block might actually fall within fair use - you'll be uploading maybe six seconds worth of the show. I doubt it, but I suppose it would be worth a try. Though in honesty, I'd be much more likely to respond as desired to a cease and desist letter than a lawsuit - the former would probably get me to stop seeding (thanks for using your manners!), the latter would result in a "fuck you!" and me making up some logs showing the plaintiff doing some seeding of child porn or something, just to prove how easy said spoofing is such that their so-called evidence clearly has no value (and in any case, if they were seeding to me, it would be legal for me to download since they're the copyright holder and have authorized the distribution).

Re:Who's on first? What's on Second? (1)

qbwiz (87077) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602130)

Who's talking about torrents? The summary does, but it says that torrent sites have less protection than Youtube (due to the fact that they don't host copyrighted material).

Re:Who's on first? What's on Second? (5, Informative)

interiot (50685) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602214)

YouTube has processes in place to receive DMCA takedown notices and remove identified copyright material. Napster didn't have a process in place to do this, and claimed to not be able to do so. The judge disagreed and said Napster had both the ability and duty [wikipedia.org] to remove identified copyrighted material, but did not, so Napster was held liable.

Re:Who's on first? What's on Second? (3, Insightful)

cpt kangarooski (3773) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602676)

Providing torrent files wouldn't be direct infringement, but would rather easily fall under one or more forms of indirect infringement. This is because when you help someone infringe, you're in just as much trouble as the infringer is. There are limits to this: not just anything is sufficient to qualify, and where it is, there may be protections for you. This is why Google (in their main business at least) doesn't get in trouble the way that Napster did; there are enough differences that they don't have to fear being shut down. But your average torrent site isn't particularly different from Napster in any way that counts.

Actually reading the Napster case and the relevant bits of 17 USC 512 would likely prove informative as to just how it works, and why one site, acting one way, might be treated more favorably than another site, acting another way.

Plus, courts do have some leeway, and on the whole they don't like people with unclean hands. They'll still treat them fairly, but they needn't be friendly, and sometimes that can be serious trouble. Napster tended to run afoul of this sort of thing too.

Yes (4, Insightful)

cshark (673578) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601600)

It is the law.
But that doesn't make it any less absurd.

Re:Yes (3, Interesting)

91degrees (207121) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601756)

So, what would you suggest th law should be, assuming that society considers anauthorised sharing of other people's content to be harmful.

Re:Yes (4, Insightful)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601816)

society doesn't. Society considers it a good compromise to allow creators a limited monopoly on the distribution of their works so as to encourage greater creation of those works. It's just unfortunate that society has no means to test and monitor the effectiveness of this deal.

Re:Yes (1)

interiot (50685) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602258)

* Copyright is de jure limited, but is de facto unlimited

Re:Yes (2, Insightful)

crosbie (446285) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602420)

Ahem. Society never had anything to do with it.

PUBLISHERS thought monopolistic privileges were a good idea, and governments were happy to oblige.

However, we don't need publishers for digital art, so there's no point creating artificial monopolies on its reproduction.

The traditional publishers don't like this.

The new publishers (all Internet users) may sympathise, but it's a very big leap to conclude that society supports copyright on digital works.

Q1) Given it helps struggling artists pay their bills and save up to start a family, do you support copyright?
A1) Oh yes.

Q2) Have you ever lent a copyrighted work to a friend without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?
A2) Er....

Q3) Have you ever borrowed a copyrighted work from a friend without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?
A3) Er....

Q4) Have you ever made a copy of a copyrighted work without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?
A4) Er....

Q5) Have you ever downloaded a copyrighted work without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?
A5) Er....

Q6) Have you ever used BitTorrent to obtain a copyrighted work without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?
A6) Er....

Q7) Have you ever used a file sharing program and left a copyrighted work in your share folder without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?
A7) Er....

Q8) Have you ever modified a copyrighted work without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?
A8) Er....

Q9) Have you ever published a modified copyrighted work without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?
A9) Er....

Q10) Do you persist in declaring your support for copyright?
A10) Er....yes?

Re:Yes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16604086)

How about asking the true question "would you want to have almost every movie and tv series you're waiting forward to never be made or anything of a similar production value ever be made again"?

Q2) Have you ever lent a copyrighted work to a friend without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?
Q3) Have you ever borrowed a copyrighted work from a friend without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?
...why do you consider either of these questionable, they're perfectly legal. I mean you begin your post by pretty much declaring "I'm a giant moron who doesn't understand copyrights" and expect people to listen to you?.

Q4) Have you ever made a copy of a copyrighted work without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?

Perfectly legal under fair use given a few other limitations.

Q5) Have you ever downloaded a copyrighted work without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?
Q6) Have you ever used BitTorrent to obtain a copyrighted work without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?
Q7) Have you ever used a file sharing program and left a copyrighted work in your share folder without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?


Of course, I lack ethics and aren't too spineless to understand that I'm that way.

Q8) Have you ever modified a copyrighted work without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?

This is allowed under fair use and see above, exactly how does it imply anything?

Q9) Have you ever published a modified copyrighted work without tracking down the poor artist concerned to ask for their permission?

Please read up on the concept of fair use, you seem to not understand it.

Q10) Do you persist in declaring your support for copyright?

Sure, great system. Oh wait, you're incapable of considering issues in abstract terms or consider that someone may consider a system good for society despite lacking enough ethics to follow it.

Re:Yes (1)

mcrbids (148650) | more than 7 years ago | (#16604218)

Your argument is rather retarded, something like "do you still beat your wife?" style stuff. Your questions are something like:

Q1) Given that a legal system improves the lives of those involved, do you try to abide by the law?
A1) Oh yes.

Q2) Have you ever driven a car at a speed greater than the posted legal speed limit?
A2) Err...

Q3) Have you ever been a passenger in a car driven at a speed greater than the posted legal speed limit?
A3) Err...

Q4) Have you ever nibbled on fruit or candy for sale at the local supermarket?
A4) Err...

Q5) Have you ever seen a friend or partner nibble on fruit or candy for sale at the local supermarket, and not stopped them?
A5) Err...

Q6) Have you ever parked your car in a metered parking spot and not put money in the meter because you would be "just a minute"?
A6) Err...

Q7) Have you ever driven a car after drinking without first confirming that your blood alcohol was not above the legal limit?
A7) Err...

Q8) Have you ever spit on the sidewalk, or performed any form of defacement of public property?
A8) Err...

Q9) Have you ever claimed a deduction as a business expense that wasn't strictly a business expense, in order to reduce your tax bill?
A9) Err...

Q10) Do you still insist that you really try to abide by the law?
A10) Err... Yes?

Nobody is perfect, and everybody has done SOMETHING wrong, somewhere. What you should be asking are questions indication what people have done right. For example:

Q11) Have you ever purchased a copyrighted work from a store?
A11) Yeah!

Q12) Have you ever purchased a copyrighted work from a store, even though the same material could be gotten for free by violating the copyrights?
A12) Sure have!

Q13) If given the choice between copyrighted products available for free, and similar copyrighted products available with similar ease for a reasonable fee, would you purchase the copyrighted material?
A13) Yes!

Re:Yes (2, Insightful)

jvkjvk (102057) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603284)

Not quite. Society, at least a large portion of it, does not seem to consider it wrong to download copyrighted material illegally. Nor do we seem to consider it wrong to share copyrighted material with others. So therefore, they cannot consider it a good compromise to allow a limited monopoly. If We did, people wouldn't infringe, right?

When the laws and Society have a parting of ways, it can be particularly painful, especially for those on the leading edge of change.

Re:Yes (2, Insightful)

Rakishi (759894) | more than 7 years ago | (#16604046)

Not quite. Society, at least a large portion of it, does not seem to consider it wrong to download copyrighted material illegally. Nor do we seem to consider it wrong to share copyrighted material with others. So therefore, they cannot consider it a good compromise to allow a limited monopoly. If We did, people wouldn't infringe, right?

Your point, just because a lot of people have no qualms about stealing, murder or hard drug use with no restrictions doesn't mean that everyone does. If you only hear about 0.5% of events and all of them are about people doing X is doesn't mean that everyone does X.

When the laws and Society have a parting of ways, it can be particularly painful, especially for those on the leading edge of change.

What charge? Your delusions of grandeur while hilarious are but also a bit frightening. If society really wanted to abolish copyrights they could, most people either don't care or think it's a good system. Most of the rest are such poor bums that they need something to legitimize their own moral shortcomings other than their own lack of morals.

ACtually, it is possible to download from Youtube (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16601648)

It isn't hard to download from youtube, it is actually quite easy. On top of that, someone can convert to Mpegs and easily distribute. Sounds to me Youtube pretty well resembles Kazza, just a couple more steps involved though.

Re:ACtually, it is possible to download from Youtu (1)

Volante3192 (953645) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601850)

"a couple more steps" easily locks out the majority of people, whether from lack of understanding or lack of motivation. The general public wants one program to do everything by itself.

Re:ACtually, it is possible to download from Youtu (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16603174)

All they would have to do is have a nerd they know download it for them and they can copy it millions of times. That is what the XXAA will look at, especially Ol' Universal. If they knew this bit of information, they would sue youtube out of business like they did mp3.com.

Re:ACtually, it is possible to download from Youtu (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16601990)

It would resembles a version of Kazaa that would resample audio down to 32 kbps. Seriously, who wants to download fuzzy post-it size videos?

Re:ACtually, it is possible to download from Youtu (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16602810)

Except the XXAA don't give a fuck. The simple fact that someone can download it is all that they look at.

Re:ACtually, it is possible to download from Youtu (1)

kill-1 (36256) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602848)

Especially using Firfox plugins like this one [mozilla.org] . Personally, I only use about 5 Firefox plugins, and this is one of them.

Re:ACtually, it is possible to download from Youtu (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16603748)

I like that you can download from YouTube. It lets me watch things at all. Flashplugin does not work on my system. (Please don't tell me about the plugin for Linux/i386. That is not my system.) So I'm glad that this hole exists.

Things that limit users do exactly just that... limit users.. Even those who want to use it for nothing more than its intended purpose. That's why copy protection is dumb.

DMCA access controls provision is my gripe (1)

fatboy (6851) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601650)

They give patent like protections to copyright holders. It's bad and wrong. A lot of the DMCA is not too bad and in some cases is good.

Re:DMCA access controls provision is my gripe (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16601880)

They need a new word for that. It's ... badong. The access controls provision is badong.

well, no wonder... (5, Insightful)

MarcoAtWork (28889) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601692)

does anybody really think that Google didn't spend a lot of time/money/lawyers figuring this stuff out BEFORE shelling out over a billion dollars for youtube? Just because the armchair QBs kept going on about the legal trouble(s) google was going to end up in, it doesn't necessarily make it true.

Re:well, no wonder... (3, Interesting)

raehl (609729) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602380)

Just because the armchair QBs kept going on about the legal trouble(s) google was going to end up in

That's not what the armchair QB's kept going on about. That YouTube isn't liable for posting the infringing content doesn't change the fact that SOMEONE is liable for posting the infringing content. When the content owners start sending subpeonas to YouTube for the IPs of the people posting the content and then the ISP's of those users to get names and addresses and file those RIAA-style $150,000-per-download lawsuits, then people stop posting content to YouTube, and with a lot of YouTube's content gone, YouTube's value decreases substantially.

Think about it. Those 'hey' clip girls are liable for TRILLIONS* in damages!

*TRILLIONS computed using RIAA math. 1 song * 10 million downloads * $300,000 = $3 billion. Your results may vary.

What a pity... (1)

Snaller (147050) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603830)

. When the content owners start sending subpeonas to YouTube for the IPs of the people posting the content and then the ISP's of those users to get names and addresses
....that Google didn't log that information.

Re:well, no wonder... (2, Insightful)

dabraun (626287) | more than 7 years ago | (#16604014)

Because many (mostly TV shows) videos on YouTube are partial snippets at low quality it, in all likelihood, drives new viewers to programs. Despite the fact that the common belief here is that "content owners are completely oblivious" I think they actually realize this. When shows are posted in full, over and over, they are going to complain. When snippets of shows are posted they are basically ads and the content owners, in large part, probably LIKE this.

The difference with the music sharing sites of old was the the content was, at the heyday, complete and good quality. For those willing to wade the waters and fix the metadata it completely replaced any interest in purchasing the material. In some cases it may have made people more aware of bands and resulted in album sales but, honestly, this was NOT how the majority of P2P users viewed the system.

Re:well, no wonder... (1)

kill-1 (36256) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602896)

Exactly what I think. Really, this is +5 Insightful, not funny.

Wrong... follow the money (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16601704)

Napster wasn't "hosting" information at the direction of its users, but rather providing a tool for users to find and download predominantly infringing content.
Except that we have about 15 years of precedent that includes busting FTP warez servers. If YouTube is fine because it is hosting, then so too should FTP. Why don't we just be honest: YouTube is a darling du jour and now that it's legal team is bankrolled by Google's billions in cash, the government can safely look the other way.

In short, if you're going to breach copyright make sure you're very financially successful at it. For everyone else, we'll throw the book at 'em.

Re:Wrong... follow the money (3, Insightful)

Zerth (26112) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601860)

>Except that we have about 15 years of precedent that includes busting FTP warez servers.

Except that history is all pre-DMCA. The DMCA gives an out for those who demonstrate good faith attempts to prevent infringement and remove all reported violations.

In other news! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16601912)

Except that history is all pre-DMCA. The DMCA gives an out for those who demonstrate good faith attempts to prevent infringement and remove all reported violations.

Fuck torrents, FTP is back!

Re:Wrong... follow the money (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602308)

The DMCA gives an out for those who demonstrate good faith attempts to prevent infringement
Does it?

I thought the DMCA penalized you if you made some attempt to 'prevent' infringement but didn't succeed.

My understanding is that you're better off not screening anything. Right?

Infringement removal (4, Insightful)

Itsallmyfault (1015439) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601720)

When presented with copywright holder's request to remove material, isn't it always granted? Hard to do that when you don't host it.

Re:Infringement removal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16602244)

Yea.
Thats problem why its legal.
plus youtube was originally
to share home movies.
they could simply say.
any copyrighted material
that makes it on the site
is the posters fault not theirs.
i guess
-aXc

and there's another factor too (1)

Wizzerd911 (1003980) | more than 7 years ago | (#16601984)

the artist/producer of the song of video clip has to actually want to press charges too. Those MPAA and RIAA seem to ahve forgotten that little part.

Re:and there's another factor too (2, Informative)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603856)

No, the copyright holder has to want to press charges. Who do you think owns those songs? I'll give you a hint, it's not the artist.

difference (4, Insightful)

lubricated (49106) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602018)

The real difference between napster and google. Money. Google can afford better laws and better lawyers.

Shocked... (3, Insightful)

Duncan3 (10537) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602070)

So Google [big corp XYZ] gets to take other poeples copyrighted content, and make money off of it without paying, but users cannot even share it for free.

If this wasn't business as usual, I'd be shocked.

.

Re:Shocked... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602746)

Are you surprised? They've been doing this with people's Usenet posts (Google Groups) and web sites (Google Cache) for years, and they're planning to do it with books as well.

FAILZOrS.. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16602120)

for *BSD because Progress. Any suuplies 7o private need to join the To you by Penisbird If you answered Satan's Dick And National gay nigger

Cake (5, Funny)

ZlatanZ++ (978060) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602260)

YouTube should really, really thank its friends at Bell."

maybe they should send them a cake.

DMCA ... Good ... Does not compute (2, Insightful)

sparkz (146432) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602262)

So the DMCA is now good ... ? But that doesn't fit the Slashdot groupthink (brain explodes)

Unclear article? Precedent? (4, Insightful)

The Amazing Fish Boy (863897) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602548)

FTFA:
Thanks to the Bells, all these companies [YouTube, etc.] are now protected by a "notice and take down" system when they host user content. That means that if Jon Stewart notices an infringing copy of The Daily Show on YouTube, Comedy Central can write a letter to YouTube and demand it be taken down.

OK, so the system works because Comedy Central can tell YouTube to take some infringing work down, and that wasn't the case with Napster. I remember the RIAA wanted Napster to take files down, Napster said they couldn't, then they started filtering searches or something. That makes sense.

But then...
Why isn't YouTube is trouble in the same way Napster and Grokster were? The first difference, as indicated, is that Napster simply wasn't covered by the 512 safe-harbor law, and YouTube is. Napster wasn't "hosting" information at the direction of its users, but rather providing a tool for users to find and download predominantly infringing content.

Huh? It sounds to me like everyone's covered by this 512, but Napster couldn't hold up their end of the agreement. Nothing to do with "hosting" from what I understand, other than because they weren't hosting the files they couldn't remove offending files.

Could someone with more information clarify this?

Also, if this precedent is set, what would stop someone from setting up a "company" that hosts MP3s on a website, same as YouTube hosts videos? The RIAA would swamp the company with requests to take down specific songs, and the community could respond to it.

Since that's the only way to keep the site up, it would be in the community's best interest to take down the files within a reasonable time limit. I'm sure the files would be uploaded again, anyway. There could even be some points system for taking down offending files.

What would this achieve? Files would be shared, for one, but I'm not especially concerned with that. It would bleed the RIAA since they would have to have people request every file be removed, individually. Since they'd probably try to use software to find all files made by their artists, a CAPTCHA could be used to ensure a real person is making the requests.

Re:Unclear article? Precedent? (2, Interesting)

Wesley Felter (138342) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603454)

Also, if this precedent is set, what would stop someone from setting up a "company" that hosts MP3s on a website, same as YouTube hosts videos? The RIAA would swamp the company with requests to take down specific songs, and the community could respond to it.

I think you just described Usenet. However, watch out for ALS v. Remarq.

Re:Unclear article? Precedent? (1)

Snaller (147050) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603870)

Nothing to do with "hosting" from what I understand, other than because they weren't hosting the files they couldn't remove offending files.


That was his point.

Covered in TWiL (2, Informative)

MaceyHW (832021) | more than 7 years ago | (#16602874)

This exact issue was the focus of discussion in the first episode of the This Week in Law Podcast [www.twit.tv] .

The panelists seemed to agree that is is an issue which the DMCA handles well. These letters are just a system of notice; failing to comply with the letter requesting that you take down the contested content doesn't have any bearing on a subsequent legal dispute over that content. It provides a mechanism to correct copyright problems without litigation.

/.ers love to complain about these letters as a tool of oppression, and certainly there's some chilling effect because most small operations are likely to take down the contested content, however there was at least a good intention behind this system.

you know what'd be hilarious? (3, Funny)

gargletheape (894880) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603148)

I'd love for youtube to start responding to DMCA takedown notices the way google does:

In response to a complaint we received under the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act, we have removed 1 videos(s) from this page. If you wish, you may view the video that the DMCA complaint was registered against here

Think about it...how could I possibly know *which* video infringes a copyright unless I can see it for myself, for educational purposes?

Of course it wouldn't be legal, but you can always dream :)

You don't say! (3, Insightful)

quakeroatz (242632) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603338)

But that's the law and why YouTube should really, really thank its friends at Bell.
Thank them for what? It's not like the YouTube concept was a shot in the dark that just, luckily happened to have its ass saved at a critical moment by the DMCA?

It is, as it was planned.
The YouTube founders (lawyers) thought of all of these contingencies long before these journalists actually did some research into the DMCA.

News at 10:
"20 000 Liquor Stores Lucky Prohibition Over, Reporter Finds"
"GM and Ford Surprised to Find Existence of Roads All of World, Makes Business Model Possible"
"Mozilla Foundation Happy To Find Compatible Network Exists for New Browser, "Internet" Apparently Worldwide"
"Linux Founder Finds Millions Of Computers Compatible With Operating System, Coincidence Drives Growing Userbase"

Oh, Sweet Irony! (1)

thedbp (443047) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603446)

TSIA

No more free advertising! (3, Insightful)

LividBlivet (898817) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603778)

What the authors of the DMCA didn't realize is that you enforce copyright at your own peril in todays world.

The RIAA pissed away a $10B+ opportunity by not blanket licensing the original Napster. Now they're on their last lap around the bowl. The MPAA will suffer a similar fate if they try and push their bought and paid for copyright nonsense too much further. Google knows exactly what its doing and exposing the absurdity of DMCA is a great first step.

I think Jon Stewart/Stephen Colbert and the execs at Comedy Central are smart enough to realize that having short low quality clips of their shows is really free advertising and viral marketing. They get a larger audience, more exposure and sell more DVD's/whatever because YouTube exposes their product to many people who wouldn't otherwise have watched. Nobody is selling YouTube clips on DVD-R's at the flea market or on the street.

In fact one of the most valuable services GooTube could offer us is a list of companies who, in their "piracy is theft, we lost $100B, the world is coming to an end, waaaaaaaaaaah" paranoia, actually send takedown notices.
It would let us know who the clueless idiots (most of MPAA/RIAA) are.

I would be very surprised if Comedy Central ever sends a takedown notice to YouTube. They strike me as a reasonable bunch. (Funny too.)
The rest of the asshats can shoot themselves in the foot all they want as far as I'm concerned.

Youtube is better than google video (1)

pjbaldes (635377) | more than 7 years ago | (#16603924)

google had no choice, they had to buy youtube just because it is so much better.

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