back to article Viacom's anti-Google copyright case rises from the dead

The class-action lawsuit filed by Viacom, the English Premier League, and others against Google has risen from the dead, thanks to a reversal of lower court decisions by the 2nd US Circuit Court of Appeals. "It's hard to characterize this as anything other than a loss for Google, and potentially a significant one," Eric …


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  1. darkpill
    Thumb Up

    Google simply cannot resist ripping other peoples IP off. About time they are called to task over it.

    1. IPatentedItSoIOwnIt

      Think you got the wrong icon there.

      << Troll would be much more your style

      1. darkpill

        Re: Think you got the wrong icon there.

        Your out of touch of reality. Books, Apple, Oracle, YouTube, Search. They rip off everyone.

        1. M Gale

          Re: Think you got the wrong icon there.

          Yes. Someone decides to create a Youtube account and upload a video of Tom Cruise going Tom Cruise Crazy. This is Youtube's fault how? For existing?

          They have a takedown procedure, and it seems to work, by the amount of "video was taken down by a copyright complaint" links I've been directed to. Your problem is that you have a sizeable proportion of the entire planet uploading videos. Believe it or not, that's what Youtube is there for. And your solution is what? Delete Youtube?

          Viacom and the rest can go fish, frankly. And that's exactly what they are doing: Fishing for money, because Google has a shitload of it. Who's next, the ISPs? For allowing people access to this magical Internet thingummybobsit that is probably being used to download pirate porn? Maybe we should just shut it all down and go back to BBS links and mailing hour. That'll show 'em.

  2. Version 1.0 Silver badge

    East Texas missed out on this one!

    "a reasonable jury could find that YouTube had actual knowledge or awareness of specific infringing activity on its website." ... that would be an East Texas jury I guess?

    The DMCA requires take down when notified - and given that there seems little doubt the Viacom et al were uploading a goodly number of videos this is going to be a tough sell long term to show that YouTube "should have known" that the crap they were getting was illegal.

    It's YouTube for crying out loud - the biggest repository of dung since the Dinosaurs died off.

  3. Dan Paul

    An unreasonabley retarded judge....(and jury)

    Simple way for YouTube to make their case would be to take the whole judge & jury to their headquarters and have them sequentially view everything that gets uploaded within 15 minutes and determine if there is anything illegal.

    This will easily prove that there is no possible way that YouTube/Google "should have known" or even "could have known" unless someone reported offending material and apparently YouTube/Google complied after being notified.

    1. John Lilburne Silver badge

      .. you do know that ...

      ... Google can detect copyright infringement within minutes of upload, that they can apply copyright owner rules to allow, allow with ads, or remove. That they were able to do so back in 2006-2007 but refused to do so unless given rights to the material that was being illegally uploaded.

      1. Charles 9 Silver badge


        I would think fingerprinting would be hit or miss, given the widely varying range of picture qualities you see. And if you set the net too wide, you could end up with false positives or misidentifications.

        1. Tom 35 Silver badge

          Re: How?

          It's the same magic box that the ISPs will use to automatically block all porn.

  4. kissingthecarpet

    Viacom et al

    don't really want to ask anyone at all to take down anything. They just want their "trade associations" to be allowed to control all recorded media on the globe - that's not unreasonable is it?

    It must be hard for the older ones who remember the years of getting their charlie biked over & the endless sumptuous expense account decadence - certainly true of some record companies at least

  5. ShadowedOne

    Wait, what?

    "Although appeals panels normally consist of three judges, this case was decided by only two – the third died while the litigation was pending."

    If the panel is supposed to consist of three judges and only two decided the case, regardless of the reason, then normal procedure was not followed. That is a mistrial.

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge


      That WAS proper procedure (to continue the case), and since both remaining judges were in agreement, the absence of the third became moot (OTOH, if they split, THEN it would need to be redone with a fresh panel). Unless you can cite the law that says otherwise.

  6. James Woods

    I wonder what would of happened to youtube if google hadn't of purchased it. You can't say it's a profitable business model because I get no ads on it and whatever ads aren't in the videos my browsers block anyhow.

    Google has demolished what was left of youtube by following the myspace example of constantly changing things. It's so busted up now google will only put the pedal to the floor.

    I haven't been able to login to my youtube account since they required you to have a google account to do so. I refuse to do that crap.

    I know youtube won't go anywhere under google since the content flows across googles network allowing them to leverage free bandwidth because ISPs want connected to google and youtube so it's free for them.

    Nothing will come about in these dmca cases. Small companies would be out of business just going through the litigation but google won't shed a feather.

  7. frank ly Silver badge

    YT can be an asset to media companies

    It's true that most of YouTube is a massive waste of time and Terabytes but it is a very convenient place to have a quick sample of TV shows and movies (if they are popular enough to have been uploaded). As such, the media companies ought to regard YouTube as a showcase for their products and I'm sure that many use it in this way. I'll bet that they don't send take-down demands for the high quality trailers for movies and TV shows that appear on it.

    Is there actually anybody (in significant numbers) who really watches complete movies or TV shows on YouTube, thus making YouTube a threat to media company outlets?

    If Google have to remove those clips that any media company wanst to be removed, then they should also remove ALL content associated with that media company, as a safeguard against future litigation and as a kick in the teeth for the media companies.

    1. Tom 13

      Re: anybody (in significant numbers) who really watches complete movies...

      Depends on your definitions of "significant numbers" and "complete movies or TV shows."

      Felicia Day and The Guild have a running series posted primarily through You-Tube with a fair number of subscribers. It's a legitimate use of the mass distribution channel for entertainment purposes, not an infringing one. Frankly, I'd say that IS a threat to Viacom et al, but one that is explicitly allowed under law. Not so much because less than a 100,000 people watching The Guild threatens their cash cow, but because as other artists begin direct marketing to their fans Viacom's cash cow will shrivel up and die.

      The problem with blocking all content for a given media company is that infringing material won't necessarily have fingerprints and will certainly be uploaded from multiple sources.

  8. Keep Refrigerated

    Viacom needs Youtube more than the world needs Viacom

    Comedy Central (Viacom owned) wouldn't even exist without Youtube - Tosh.0 would have to stop broadcasting, Daily Show and Colbert Report would continue but suffer, many other shows would lose "memeworthy" inspiration for their own schtick.

    Viamcom lost out in a bidding war with Google for Youtube, then they tried to create a piss-poor copy of it; this seems to be more of a scorched earth "if we can't have it, no-one can" approach to litigation. It simple has to fail otherwise after Youtube is taken down, what next? The web risks taking a huge step back to the 90's.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    YouTube SchmooTube

    Is there anything on Youtube which isn't either:

    1: Shaky hand-held videos, made by television presenter wannabes, which only serve to demonstrate why they should never be allowed in front of a camera

    2: Mind-numbingly unfunny and uninteresting videos of people's pets or kids, doing mind-numbingly unfunny and uninteresting things

    3: Some old pirated movies or TV shows you might want to watch, broken into eleventy billion ten minute sections, with section 347 removed "for copyright infringement" to really fuck you off, halfway through watching

    4: placeholders for some old music videos, you remember from years ago, which have been replaced by the abovementioned copyright notice and an invitation to buy said tune on iTunes or suchlike. [No thanks, record company vultures. I just wanted to frighten the kids by showing them a clip of The Osmonds in action —not purchase their back catalogue!]

    And of course, let's not forget, all of the above adorned with commentardery so fuckwittedly ignorant and illiterate that you think someone really has been issuing chimps with typewriters.

    Any fule kno' that Vimeo is where the real artists upload their home movies, these days!

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