Italy: Google execs convicted of hosting bullying video

by Walter Olson on February 25, 2010

Apparent theory: YouTube should screen and monitor everything before it goes up. [TechDirt, American Lawyer, Jim Harper/Cato at Liberty, New York Times]

{ 34 comments }

1 James 02.25.10 at 5:33 am

So let me see if I have the basic Youtube business model straight. A major draw, almost certainly THE major draw on youtube is copyright-infringing clips. Youtube makes a show of removing them once claims have been made. However, to get a sense of how the copyright claim system works on youtube, until very recently if you clicked their link to report a terms of service violation on youtube, the first thing that you were met with was a threat of legal action against YOU if you reported a clip without standing.. not that you were or were not wrong, but that you didn’t have legal standing. but, eventually, after jumping through various hoops, the copyright holder can indeed make a claim and youtube will remove the offending video and also give the so injured party the advertising money that youtube collected based on showing this video for the period it was up. ha ha, no, just kidding, they keep it. by this point, of course, somebody else will have uploaded another copy of the offending video. rinse, lather, repeat. There are few ‘removed due to copyright claim’ videos on youtube that can’t be found on youtube in some other form.

repeaat times 100 million and make billions while the copyright holders basically go uncompensated and worse, less than whole. meanwhile, if you steal a single DVD from best buy, you’ll find yourself in the pokey.

no sympathy for youtube/google here, even if the italian ruling isn’t on the up and up. while i certainly enjoy watching youtube videos as much as the next guy, i’m not so blind to the realities of it all that I don’t see that this is one of the greatest con jobs of all time (with this google book settlement not far behind).

the lesson seems to be that if you get big enough and have enough lawyers, and if the injured class, however large, is dispersed enough, and if you can muddle basic and well established legal principles by claiming that new technology makes it a different case entirely, apparently you can get away with bloody murder.

2 Melvin H. 02.25.10 at 8:32 am

But, if I understand the case right from an earlier article, this “defamation/invasion of privacy” that supposedly took place….happened before Youtube bought the company which showed the video! (And, those convicted are members of Youtube’s management, NOT Google Italy’s management at the time.)

James, this needs to be given an Italian equivalent of a Section 230 smackdown; how is this enforceable even in Italy??

Second, James, how do YOU suggest Youtube screen every single video uploaded, every day?? That would be like asking the USPS to screen every single piece of mail every day…..impossible by definition (and if you think mail service is slow now, imagine having some gov’t/ employees–millions of them–scanning every piece of mail every day?_).

3 James 02.25.10 at 9:30 am

Melvin,

I’m not going to comment on the italy case. As I made clear in my comment, I don’t particularly have an opinion on it.

What I DO have an opinion about is this: copyright is supposed to reflect a balance between the rights of the creators and the needs of the public. The situation where google/youtube profits to the tune of hundreds of millions if not billions of dollars by facilitating copyright infringement as not an incidental, but fundamentally central part of their revenue stream is clearly out of balance. this is not the case of the one in a zillion contract killer using a common carrier such as a phone system for illegal activity – this is a case where a major chunk, if not a majority of youtube’s revenue is based on infringing content AND google’s revenues are directly proportional to and dependant on the illegality of the content (whereas, for example, the phone company isequally compensated regardless of whether the contract killer is discussing a hit or your grandmother is discussing recipes).

More fairly balanced situations are easy to envision:
- define very that due to its advertising revenue model, google/youtube in effect must shoulder far more responsibility for their content than a simple common carrier.
- insist that if infringing clips are located, that google not be able to profit from them. in the most fair situation, any money made (up, to, say the first 5 years after a clip was posted) would go to the rightsholder. after that time or once an infringing clip has been identified, the rightsholder would be free to negotiate with google for a percentage of future ad revenue from the clip (or not). or, i’d settle for ‘the money goes to charity’ even.

I note that if you run a CD/DVD duplication house in the USA, you are responsible for making sure that what you duplicate is legal, or you could find yourself in a heap of trouble. that’s for CDs/DVDs with not nearly the reach of a youtube and where the duplication house stands to make pennies per disc as opposed to the up to the tens of thousands of more than google makes on popular infringing clips.

So, Melvin. how do I suggest that google screens? I suggest they do this by being forced to by economic reality – a legally mandated reality that tells them that they stand to lose up to 100% of the ad revenue they get if a rightsholder shows up.. and that they stand to profit handsomely by entering into a negotiated settlement with the rightsholder. that’s how you set this up. that’s fair to all involved, and this would probably also spout a cottage industry of people who search uploaded videos on rightsholders’ behalf for a percentage of their take.

THIS is called balance. this is fair.. not the current system where youtube/google profits off the backs of rightsholders in a wink-wink arrangement.

I leave one final thought: ever run into a taken down clip on youtube? the text goes something like this:

“This clip has been removed due to a copyright claim by (ESPN)”

or whatever. Not “this clip has been removed due to copyright infringement by one of our uploaders whose account has been banned”, but rather, the message is “(ESPN) is a bid bad ogre who is ruining your fun.” Cunning arrogance on Youtube’s part to redirect the anger at the actual rightsholder. Youtube laughs all the way to the bank.

4 L. C. Burgundy 02.25.10 at 9:47 am

Geez, did a Google executive run over your dog or something James? Youtube is an excellent resource and gives air to films and video clips that would have otherwise been long lost in obscurity.

You said:
What I DO have an opinion about is this: copyright is supposed to reflect a balance between the rights of the creators and the needs of the public.

Copyright law has not been about resembling even a little bit of this balance for decades. There is zero public interest being served with author’s lifetime+95 years nonsense. That is absurd and abusive and has nothing to do with letting an author make money from his work – it’s designed to tie things up in copyright nearly perpetually, especially when Congress inevitably makes the term lifetime+145 years another few years down the road.

Thankfully we have had a little sanity added back to the process by technology and Google. Good on them.

5 Benjamin 02.25.10 at 11:48 am

There is too much on YouTube for Google to effectively screen it. And this case has nothing to do with copyright, so the whole copyright point by James was moot for this story.

Every minute of the day, 20 hours of YouTube videos are posted. It would take Google 5,184,000 employees working 8 hour shifts just to screen the videos uploaded in one day. If required to screen all past videos which are not screened, it would take forever.

6 Benjamin 02.25.10 at 11:59 am

Another thing, each employee would have to watch video continuously with a pause between them. If you had to watch a bunch of video of people goofing off in front of their cellphone cameras, you would go insane. You would be praying it see some copyrighted material because it would at least not be insane.

Plus you have to know fair use and such. Is it fair use to post a minute or two from a 1 hour show? Are the comments saying something about the video that they are pointing out for fair use purposes? I didn’t calculate the time that would take, but I guess that might require more employees if they have to stop between videos to justify why they are denying a video.

7 James 02.25.10 at 1:12 pm

Benjamin,

Given that you don’t appear to have actually read my post, I’m not going to reply to you. I briefly read your post, and it’s clear that not only did you not read my post, you don’t know the first thing about fair use. Stop posting and go back to school.

IC Burgundy: youtube is an excellent resource for the end-user.. Just like a jewelry store with a broken security system is for the thief. yes, there’s absolutely much to recommend about rescuing long forgotten clips and other socially useful functions. but, there is not a film from hollywood or any foreign equivalent where the rightsholder could not be found with a modicum of work, and I’m sure that the licensor of some 1941 propaganda film would be happy to license it to youtube in exchange for a reasonable percentage of revenues. The point is that youtube is clearly out of wack.. it takes from one group (copyright holders) and gives to itself to the general public.

as i’ve made clear to people who bothered to read my post, there are clear alternative, easily implementable models by which all parties would be in something resembling an equitable balance. however, as google continues to be the fox that guards the henhouse, this is unlikely to happen unless the law or some competent party gets its act together. right now, google/youtube is simply buying off anybody with the resources to potentially fight them by entering into side agreements, thus truly screwing over the small copyright holder.

i stand to note that i am not a ‘copyright holder’ nor do i have any particular interest in this. but i do recognize injustice when is see it, and youtube is definitely it.

8 gitarcarver 02.25.10 at 2:53 pm

James,

However, to get a sense of how the copyright claim system works on youtube, until very recently if you clicked their link to report a terms of service violation on youtube, the first thing that you were met with was a threat of legal action against YOU if you reported a clip without standing..

That is not on YouTube, that is on the law itself. The DCMA requires the information that YouTube / Google demands for a takedown notice. This is to prevent false claims. You are correct to say “until the law changes…” but you are incorrect to say it is YouTube’s fault for following the law.

http://www.copyright.gov/title17/92chap5.html#512

- define very that due to its advertising revenue model, google/youtube in effect must shoulder far more responsibility for their content than a simple common carrier.

That would mean that all comments in this site and every site would be subject to such moderation under the thread of legal action. No one wants or would accept that.

or whatever. Not “this clip has been removed due to copyright infringement by one of our uploaders whose account has been banned”, but rather, the message is “(ESPN) is a bid bad ogre who is ruining your fun.”

Cunning arrogance or a statement of fact?

Lastly, while you continue to say that you are not making a comment on the Italian case, you clearly are trying to link what you feel is bad behavior in the Italian case where no copyright infringement took place with what you feel is wrongful behavior by YouTube.

I disagree with your position that two wrongs make a right.

9 Ace of Sevens 02.25.10 at 5:09 pm

James, you are way off base here. Basically, anyone can complain on YouTube, claim DMCA and get anything taken down. They warn you about consequences for false reports, but don’t require any sort of evidence you are the copyright holder or even validate you identity.

10 Sean 02.26.10 at 1:28 am

I am sort of with James on this one. The argument for Youtube seems to be based upon the impossibility of them monitoring their business. That argument is fundamentally flawed. The fact that they are of a particular size is a matter of choice for Youtube. they are not compelled to allow the uploading of so many videos.

The argument essentially suggests that a company can become so big that it is able to avoid the consequences of its actions when those actions are engaged in for nothing more than commercial gain.

In the modern era the current catch cry seems to be “We are an internet hosting/service provider. Our product does no harm. If people misuse the product tto cause others harm that is not out problem, even though we know that it is happening in a general sense and we do nothing ot stop it”.

We expect newspapers and television to be responsible for what they publish and publishing houses to be repsonsible for the content of books written by others, but not internet publishers.

Why is that? Because they are too big and it is too hard for them?

As Robert Maxwell famously said (a UK publisher who took a dive off the back of his boat when his empire was about to come crashing down) Owe a $ and the back owns you, owe a million and you own the bank.

11 James 02.26.10 at 12:14 pm

but google/youtube still gets to keep the money during that interval, right?

whatever the realities of the current takedown situation are or are not (and, while i freely admit to being a moron), for the life of me in the new ‘more ads’ youtube interface i can’t even see how to file a report (i’m sure it’s there, but they’ve gone and hidden it).

Also, just to be clear – so if i had some intellectual property, it is basically my job now to go from youtube1 to yourtube9999 and police each of these sites? is that a ‘fair’ balance?

you people are having a laugh.

12 James 02.26.10 at 12:28 pm

“That would mean that all comments in this site and every site would be subject to such moderation under the thread of legal action. No one wants or would accept that.”

these comments are incidental to the business. youtube’s alexandric libraries of infringing clips ARE their business. the occasional camgirl32 with made up eyes and a tight-t-shirt notwithstanding, there can be little doubt that youtube derives a substantial share (if not the lion’s share) of its VERY substantial advertising revenue due to the attraction of copyright infringing clips.

let’s look at the situation here: if i used this forum to provide advance copies of harry potter’s new works and if the owners of this blog should have been aware of this as a regular activity, then they are at least partially to blame. however, a reasonable person would soon see that this blog has little if anything to gain from such behavior, so the case against the forum owners would be very weak. youtube, on the other hand, could not even pretend to be ignorant of the fact that the vast majority of its revenue depends on illegal stuff–it exists BECAUSE of it – a completely different situation.

youtube makes a mockery of american copyright law and its principles of balance. the solution is as i proposed it above – make a system where ad revenues from infringing materials are returned to the rightsholder and then wherein a negotiated settlement can be arranged.

13 gitarcarver 02.26.10 at 1:12 pm

whatever the realities of the current takedown situation are or are not

That seems to be a tacit admission that YouTube was correct in following the law concerning take down notices.

for the life of me in the new ‘more ads’ youtube interface i can’t even see how to file a report (i’m sure it’s there, but they’ve gone and hidden it).

You really can’t see the word “COPYRIGHT” at the bottom of the main page? I find that difficult to believe.

Also, just to be clear – so if i had some intellectual property, it is basically my job now to go from youtube1 to yourtube9999 and police each of these sites?

The copyright – including the ability to waive it – belongs with the owner of the copyright. It is your responsibility to protect it.

these comments are incidental to the business.

Comments are eyeballs on the site which determine the site revenue.

if i used this forum to provide advance copies of harry potter’s new works and if the owners of this blog should have been aware of this as a regular activity, then they are at least partially to blame.

Why? If you provide the work, how is it the site’s responsibility? What if the work that you say is the new Harry Potter book is, in fact, not, but a derivative work of “fan fiction” whose author has authorized the work to placed on sites?

youtube makes a mockery of american copyright law and its principles of balance. the solution is as i proposed it above

So you now want private firms policing their sites for unknown copyright infringement? Without knowing who owns the copyright? How would you implement that? Of course, if they miss something by accident, you would want them held accountable for that? The copyright holder has a legitimate interest in controlling their works. No one else does. It rests solely on the copyright holder. When a site ignores the copyright holder’s request to remove something, then the site is in peril. Not before.

14 James 02.26.10 at 2:22 pm

“That seems to be a tacit admission that YouTube was correct in following the law concerning take down notices.”

I’m not going to read the rest of your response if that’s how bad your interpretive and analytical skills are.

15 gitarcarver 02.26.10 at 3:03 pm

I’m not going to read the rest of your response if that’s how bad your interpretive and analytical skills are.

While I appreciate that you wish not to respond, the reality of the situation is that according to you, YouTube made people “jump through hoops” to issue a take down notice. When shown that YouTube was actually following the law (and I even gave you the citation) you then appeared to say that you were unaware of the regulations. If that is a mis-characterization of your position, then I apologize. If you knew about the requirements for the takedown notice, then your attack on YouTube’s requirements for the takedown notice was at the very least, unjustified. If you were unaware of the requirements and took the time to read them, then you must admit that YouTube was correct in their policies and requirements for takedown notices.

16 Doug 02.26.10 at 8:32 pm

The whole point of the article was not about how or whether Google should take down copyright video, but rather that some one at Google was held CRIMINALLY liable for this. Ponder that awhile.

17 Melvin H. 02.27.10 at 12:01 am

Seems like for someone who keeps starting his posts with something like “I’m not going to . . . . “, James, you do keep responding to “others’ posts” constantly…even though all of your posts seem to have zilch to do with the story at hand:

“I’m not going to comment on the italy case. As I made clear in my comment, I don’t particularly have an opinion on it.”

That is your first sentence responding to my first post (including your lack of capitalization of “italy”); my question to you is, then why did you use three over-long posts (#1, #3, and #7) plus another post at #11, to waste the readers’ time by “saying you are not going to comment on the Italy story as you have no opinion on it”, then launch into an anti-YouTube/Google rant that should not even be on this thread? Here, I agree with Doug: Why is anyone at Google being held CRIMINALLY liable?
Short answer please, James–and if you start with anything similar to “I’m not going to….”, then just stop there and don’t waste the time.
One sentence of that is enough.

18 James 02.27.10 at 4:17 am

Guys,

I can and do appreciate that my post is about youtube in general, not about that italy incident. I also appreciate that many of you are trying desperately to draw the discussion away from the issues I have raised. So it goes. If you don’t want to participate, don’t.

However, one thing struck me.. I indicated that I was unable to find the link to report an infringing video on youtube. It was pointed out to me that this is done by clicking ‘copyright’ at the bottom of the screen. Maybe this is obvious to some of you, but to most of us that little ‘copyright’ link at most other websites leads to a general bit of boilerplate about the site itself, the use of its logos, and so forth. I’d contend that that link is far from obvious and in fact is purposefully designed to be slightly hidden.

Anyway, let’s move on from that and assume that I’m wrong on that issue and that it’s actually quite clear to all except me. Fine, the next claim I had was that they make it hard to report an issue. Specifically, my wording had two basic points:
1. they make you jump through hoops to report things.
2. only the rightsholder, not a proxy or a random site vistor can report things as violating.
I was promptly told how wrong I was. Oh really?
Try this:
GO to youtube and click on the copyright link. Read the long list of requirements (hoops) there. Note how you must be the rightsholder to report a violation. the system is clearly and obviously designed to keep infringing clips up for as long as possible and despite claims here, it is NOT possible for others to report infringing clips.

Furthermore, as a test, I searched for some comedy clips that had been removed due to copyright claims – I found 10 more copies of the same clip. What does this say?

Just to be clear – according to you people, google with its millions upon millions in ad revenue from hosting infriging clips is not responsible in any way for them unless a complex legalistic process is done by the rightsholders on a clip by clip basis. Google in essence does no work other than technical work in hosting the clips. Meanwhile, according to your logic, it is the responsibility of the rightsholders to patrol youtube and to jump through the hoops.

And yes, I may not have capitalized “Italy.” Any more smoke, mirrors, and irrelevancies you want to throw into the discussion?

19 Melvin H. 02.27.10 at 8:45 am

Add #17 to the list of James’s irrelevant posts….
The only reason I pointed out “italy” was, that it was in YOUR post.

Now, back to the relevant question: With kind permission of Doug at post #15: “The whole point of the article was not about how or whether Google should take down copyright video, but rather that some one at Google was held CRIMINALLY liable for this. Ponder that awhile.”

20 gitarcarver 02.27.10 at 12:23 pm

I’d contend that that link is far from obvious and in fact is purposefully designed to be slightly hidden.

I would disagree that a link that is out in the open is far from obvious. Even assuming that you are correct, there is a link to the copyright notice page through the “Help” link as well as the “Contact Us” link. There is a link to the copyright notice through their support page. Contrary to your assertion, the link for creating a takedown notice are easy to find, not hidden and easily accessible.

1. they make you jump through hoops to report things.

They make you comply with the law. What you consider “hoops” are the requirements of the law they must follow. While you continue to rail against YouTube, your gripe is really with the law itself.

Doug and Melvin are correct, this article was not whether a video should be taken down or the method of doing so, but rather that someone at Google was held criminally liable for the content of the video.

21 James 02.28.10 at 9:06 am

for the Nth time, I fully agree that my post is NOT about whether google should be criminally liable in the Italy case. I’ve not an expressed an opinion on this, though I will note tha somebody has just been jailed for 60 days in Canada for stealing a beer worth $3.55. Yes, he was a 19 year old repeat offender and yes ‘theft’ is not the same as ‘copyright infringement,’ but on the other hand, yes those google execs probably collect 6 or 7 figure paychecks based largely on overwhelmingly on providing access to copyright infringing materials. So, at best I’ll say ‘I have no opinion on this.’ I don’t think the matter is as open and shut as the case of somebody posting a copy of harry potter in the comments section of this forum which the owner promptly takes down upon due notice, and I also don’t think it’s anywhere nearly as open and shut as jailing somebody running a pirate cd factory in china. but, my instincts are theat youtube, in toto, is a lot closer to the latter than to the former given how much of their revenue is so directly tied to providing infringing material, how they take a legalistic approach to processing takedowns, and how they do not at all compensate legitimate copyright holders once infringing material is found. In short, my belief continues to be that youtube is, ipso facto, a criminal or at least highly unethical enterprise, no matter how much i personally find it useful at times. Clearly many people disagree, though I suspect that the vast majority of the people who claim to disagree have muddled their own personal views of the usefulness of youtube with the ethical propriety of it all.

22 gitarcarver 02.28.10 at 11:59 am

Clearly many people disagree, though I suspect that the vast majority of the people who claim to disagree have muddled their own personal views of the usefulness of youtube with the ethical propriety of it all.

James, with all due respect, this thread has reached a point where further discussion will serve no purpose. Clearly you see YouTube as an illegal enterprise despite not being able to demonstrate what laws they have broken. Clearly you feel that somehow their adhering to the law is further proof that they are an illegal enterprise. (How obeying the law proves illegal behavior is beyond my comprehension.) Whether it be your continued assertion that the take down notices are “hoops” instead of what is clearly legal compliance, or your assertion that YouTube “hides” the way to communicate with them concerning take down notices, in spite of the fact that the site is riddled with links and information on just that subject, it is clear that nothing is going to change your mind.

When in a battle between you and the world, bet on the world.

Good luck to you.

23 Ace of Sevens 03.02.10 at 3:29 am

Name two popular YouTube videos (over half a million views) that are copyright-infringements. (Note that Chad Vader is clearly parody). YouTube’s main business is amateur stand-up comics, people’s cats and people’s kids. If anything, they err too much on the side of preventing copyright violations. That’s why they have the ten-minute limit on videos (to keep people from uploading TV shows) and the rather easy reporting process. This has actually been abused many times in the past. Uri Geller made false copyright claims to get videos where James Randi explained how his “psychic” abilities worked pulled. VenomFangX used false copyright claims in an attempt to silence critics like ThunderF00t, who had a habit of responding to his videos and demolishing their claims and a BNP official almost got Richard Coughlan banned with multiple claims after he called them fascists.

24 James 03.02.10 at 6:22 am

Ace: your question is a loaded one. Yes, the most popular individual videos on youtube are likely to be non-infringing. this is because infringing videos have a short lifespan between put up and takedown. there have been dozens of copies of george carlin’s ‘religion is bullshit’ stand-up routine on youtube – all of which are infringing (do some searches on youtube – you’ll find them). these predictably are taken down after a short time and then somebody else uploads another copy. ditto for TV shows, music videos, and so forth. So, while individual infringing videos will likely not make any top n videos of youtube list, i’d be shocked if in toto they don’t contribute to a large, if not the majority of youtube’s revenues, and i suspect that you know this too.

gitar: what laws are they breaking? they are republishing infringing material in a manner that clearly fails both ‘fair use’ and ‘common carrier’ tests. so, i’d say there’s a fairly compelling case to be made that they are in violation of title 17 circular 92 in multiple ways.

or, put it another way – how would the law feel about a place where i set up a movie theater with hundreds of comfortable seats, a pay bar, and a state of the art projector system. patrons would come in and have a seat, and some of them would bring a flash disc with them. they’d insert the flash disc into the projector, at which point one of my ads would be shown (for which i’d get paid by an advertisig company based on the number of people in the audience at the time). then, the contents of the flash disc would be played. if a copyright holder came by and noted that the contents of the flash disc were copyrighted, i’d ask the customer who brought in the flash disc not to do it again, though if another customer came in with essentially the same material, i’d be free to start the process. my personal profit is tied to the number of people who watch, and i treat every case of violation as seperate and novel. do you think such a place would last five minutes before being taken down? don’t be ridiculous. of course it wouldn’t.

25 gitarcarver 03.02.10 at 9:39 am

James,

they are republishing infringing material in a manner that clearly fails both ‘fair use’ and ‘common carrier’ tests. so,

They are not content providers as defined under the law. Therefore your position that they are “republishing” is not accurate in the least.

26 James 03.02.10 at 11:18 am

I’m sure you’re referring to Youtube’e status as an OSP per the Online Copyright Infringement Liability Limitation Act. to which i say BOLLOCKS.

TEST 1. An OSP must “not receive a financial benefit directly attributable to the infringing activity” to qualify for § 512(c) protection – YOUTUBE FAILS THIS TEST. Sorry, youtube VERY CLEARLY fails this test as infringing videos are and continue to be a major ‘draw’ for youtube. Denial ain’t just a river in egypt, baby.

TEST 2″B” – “Knowledge of Infringing Material”. This one is not as clear cut as test 1, but that’s only because test so is so clear cut. I’d posit that youtube fails the “red flag” test, but this is for a longer debate than I’m interested in having here.

in short, yes, I think youtube complies with “the law” when it comes to takedown notices.. though they do so in the most obnoxious way possible. however, since they fail test 1, it is irrelevant.

or, do you really think that my hypothetical ‘bring your own flash drive’ movie theater would last more than 5 minutes? no, its ability to survive would depends on its size – either it would have to be so small that nobody gives a damn or so large that it manages to intimidate even government lawyers into dealing with it and so ubiquitous that satisfied users like gitarcarver would go about making any possible excuse or wordplay necessary to keep their toy in business.

27 gitarcarver 03.02.10 at 11:35 am

YOUTUBE FAILS THIS TEST

Sorry, YouTube PASSES this test. The key word is “direct.” YouTube does not receive any direct financial benefit from posting the infringing materials.

28 James 03.02.10 at 12:34 pm

“Sorry, YouTube PASSES this test. The key word is “direct.” YouTube does not receive any direct financial benefit from posting the infringing materials.”

Comedy Gold.

29 James 03.02.10 at 12:43 pm

Umm.. and in case some of you out there don’t understand why gitarcarver’s statement is comedy gold, consider this: it was ruled that napster failed this test SIMPLY BECAUSE THE POPULARITY OF (traffic to) THEIR SERVICE WAS SIGNIFICANTLY INCREASED BY THIS ACTIVITY. So, even if we take away the tens or hundreds of millions that youtube makes per year by advertising atop such infringing material, by the napster standard ruling, YouTube FAILS. That’s BEFORE the millions upon millions. Add the millions upon millions, and in my view “criminality” enters the picture. But even if we’re not prepared to take the discussion there, there’s no way in hell a person with a straight face could claim that youtube passes the OSP test.

and to say nothing of the fact that copyright directives such as the OSP ruling are explicitly built such that when bright-lining occurs, there is a huge likelihood to believe that they are broken in the sense that the essential balance that copyright is intended to preserve is not being maintained.

If anybody out there is just kind of following along and wondering why I am so frustrated, now that you see how unashamedly gitarcarver is prepared to lie for his cause, surely now you see where the frustration comes from.

30 gitarcarver 03.02.10 at 12:52 pm

Comedy Gold.

Glad I could provide a laugh for you. However, as you have stated, the revenues for YouTube come from the advertising, not from the videos themselves.

By any definition, that is not “direct” revenue from the infringing material.

31 Walter Olson 03.02.10 at 1:23 pm

Using a post to veer off on a different, no matter how interesting, topic (“thread hijacking”) is disfavored to start with. Doing it anonymously, and as a newcomer to the site, is further disfavored. Insulting regular commenters — as by accusing them of deliberate lying when an allegation of mistakenness would do — is yet more disfavored.

If there is any point in further extending this already prolonged discussion, of which I’m not sure, decent manners are called for.

32 gitarcarver 03.02.10 at 2:43 pm

James,

I believe that you have misread and misunderstood the Napster ruling and how it would apply to YouTube.

However, at this time I agree with Mr Olson and will withdraw from this conversation.

Good luck to you.

33 James 03.02.10 at 5:34 pm

Given your insightful observation that gitarcarver is simply mistaken, I regret and thereby withdraw my ill-advised comment that he/she was being deliberately untruthful and apologize to gitarcarver.

As far as threadjacking goes, this doesn’t appear to exactly be grand central station, so I’d submit that this is not really a significant issue here, but at any rate this thread has probably reached the end of its usefulness anyway.

Good luck to you and to gitarcarver

34 Patrick 03.03.10 at 6:49 am

What a strange person.

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