Lawsuit threatens artistic expression, says YouTube
Wednesday 28 May 2008
A $1bn (£506m) copyright lawsuit against YouTube by one of the world's biggest media companies threatens online artistic and political expression, the website has claimed.
YouTube's owner, Google, issued the warning as part of its defence against Viacom, which owns MTV, Comedy Central and other channels. Viacom says it has identified 150,000 unauthorised clips on YouTube that have been watched more than 1.5 billion times. Google says the legal action "threatens the way hundreds of millions of people legitimately exchange information" over the web.
While many media groups have agreements with Google to share revenue from advertising that appears beside copyrighted material on YouTube, Viacom was enraged that clips from some of its shows, such as South Park, SpongeBob SquarePants and MTV Unplugged, have become YouTube favourites.
The lawsuit was filed in Manhattan last year, barely six months after the search engine bought YouTube for $1.65bn.
In Google's latest submission, it said: "By seeking to make carriers and hosting providers liable for internet communications, Viacom's complaint threatens the way hundreds of millions of people legitimately exchange information."
Viacom is trying to rip up the legislative compromise that enabled the explosion of user-generated content and gave rise to what tech- industry pundits call Web 2.0. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (1998) protects internet companies from copyright infringements by their users, provided they respond sufficiently to the complaints of the copyright holders. Without such protections, YouTube could not exist, Google argues.
Viacom says Google has done "little or nothing" to stop infringement, instead claiming YouTube's "vast library" of copyrighted works was "the cornerstone of its business plan".
Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes
- 2 Loom bands: Bids for dress made from colourful rubber reach almost £154,000 on eBay
- 3 PornHub begs users to stop uploading video clips of Brazil getting beaten 7-1
- 4 Why I'm on the brink of burning my Israeli passport
- 5 L'Oreal cuts ties with Belgium supporter Axelle Despiegelaere after hunting trip photographs
Sustained immigration has not harmed Britons' employment, say government advisers
Australia facing international condemnation after turning around Sri Lankans at sea
7/7 memorial defaced on anniversary of 2005 attacks with ‘Blair lied thousands died’ graffiti
Even when it brutalises one of its own teenage citizens, America is helpless against Israel
Socialist Worker called to apologise over ‘vile’ article saying Eton schoolboy Horatio Chapple's death is ‘reason to save the polar bears’
War is war: Why I stand with Israel
iJobs Money & Business
£50000 - £70000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Business Analyst Consultant (Fina...
£300 - £350 per day + competitive: Orgtel: My client, a leading bank, is curre...
£28000 - £32000 per annum + pension, 25 days holiday: Ashdown Group: A highly ...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Birmingham: Randstad Education are seeking a Fi...