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Is YouTube really playing with fire?

NateDawg [PersonRank 10]

Saturday, October 28, 2006
13 years ago2,598 views

Tim Wu has written a piece on Slate.com examining the legal hype over YuoTube's copyright infringement and reality of the copyright law. What's even more interesting about this article is the background to where this loophole started, Ma Bell.

<quote>
There's only one problem with these theories: the copyright law itself. Under the copyright code, YouTube is in much better legal shape than anyone seems to want to accept. The site enjoys a strong legal "safe harbor," a law largely respected by the television and film industries for the choices it gives them.

But the most interesting thing is where all this legal armor protecting YouTube—and most of the Web 2.0 (user-generated content) industry—comes from. It's the product of the Bell lobby—Google's bitter opponent in the ongoing Net Neutrality debates. So, while YouTube may be the creative child of Silicon Valley, it is also, as much, the offspring of Bell lobbying power.
</quote>

Link:
slate.com/id/2152264

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

13 years ago #

Safe Harbor is kinda cool but also kinda weird. Does it mean I can basically create a site with 90% warez and then whenever someone tells me of this or that cracked software on my site, I'll go like "oops, I'll remove it immediately"? How is that not still a warez site? I mean, you just have to spend 5 minutes on YouTube to realize it breaks all kinds of traditional copyright laws. (Not that I think that's immoral, in fact, I think traditional copyright laws are immoral.)

/pd [PersonRank 10]

13 years ago #

yes, but Safe harbor sanctions can be lost too!!

"YouTube is shielded because the site is an "online service provider," arguably similar to your own Internet Service Provider (ISP). Among other things, the DMCA provides protection for service providers against being held responsible for the actions of their users. Much like the RIAA can't sue Comcast for little Jimmy's pirate web server he hosts on their broadband network, so too with YouTube."

arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/ ...

Hashim [PersonRank 10]

13 years ago #

"(Not that I think that's immoral, in fact, I think traditional copyright laws are immoral.)"

As someone who deals with a dozen sites republishing my blog feed and running ads against it, I don't think copyright laws are evil.

Arcane and outdated? A little, yes.

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

13 years ago #

> As someone who deals with a dozen sites republishing
> my blog feed and running ads against it, I don't think copyright
> laws are evil.

I didn't say copyright laws in general are evil, I think current (traditional US) copyright laws are stupid/ immoral (because they harm creativity of individuals by protecting rich lobbies) – and current copyright laws are a single variant of many we could choose from.

For example, what if we replace all different copyright laws with a single rule, "You are infringing on copyright if you harm the content owner's revenue he gets through this content"?

This way, if you republish a full movie that hasn't been available for decades online, then that's not a copyright infringement, because people won't buy less DVDs of it (because there are no DVDs to buy). And if you republish 2 minutes of a Hollywood blockbuster currently on DVD and you remix it to some music that's currently in the charts, then that's no copyright infringement because people won't buy less of this movie or song (probably, they'll buy more, because you give it free exposure). If, on the other hand, someone takes your content and e.g. ranks better for it on Google, you can argue that you're losing out on ad income... and *then* it's copyright infringement.

This thread is locked as it's old... but you can create a new thread in the forum. 

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