Viacom slaps Google with $1 billion YouTube lawsuit

Discussion in 'Amateur Video Production' started by Frank, Mar 13, 2007.

  1. Frank

    Frank Guest

    Viacom Inc. has sued Google Inc., alleging copyright infringement from
    video-sharing site YouTube and seeking $1 billion in damages.

    Read all about it!

    http://www.itworld.com/Man/2683/070313viacomyoutube/

    I think that one billion dollars is _such_ a nice round number. :)
     
    Frank, Mar 13, 2007
    #1
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  2. Frank

    Frank Guest

    Frank, Mar 13, 2007
    #2
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  3. Frank

    nappy Guest

    Thanks Frank.. it is all over the news though.. can't miss it.
     
    nappy, Mar 13, 2007
    #3
  4. Frank

    Guest Guest

    I love watching greedy Jews going at each other.
     
    Guest, Mar 13, 2007
    #4
  5. Frank

    Frank Guest

    Sorry, haven't had the television or radio on all day, which is
    unusual for me.
     
    Frank, Mar 13, 2007
    #5
  6. Frank

    Frank Guest

    But I thought Google was Protestant. :)
     
    Frank, Mar 13, 2007
    #6
  7. I'd bet Viacom's press relations people had as much a hand in
    picking the number as their legal staff. How could a media
    conglomerate like Viacom avoid "playing to the camera"?
     
    Richard Crowley, Mar 14, 2007
    #7
  8. Frank

    Bucky Guest

    Viacom should have sued for $1,415,926,536. (Google style, using the
    fractional digits of pi)
     
    Bucky, Mar 14, 2007
    #8
  9. Frank

    Frank Guest

    I can't say that I disagree with you, Richard, but I just read the
    27-page complaint (available in the form of an Adobe Acrobat PDF file
    via the link at the end of this post), and note that it says:

    "...Plaintiffs have identified more than 150,000 unauthorized clips of
    their copyrighted programming on YouTube that had been viewed an
    astounding 1.5 billion times. And that is only a small fraction of the
    content on YouTube that infringes Plaintiffs' copyrights..."

    So the one billion dollar figure is at least based upon some actual
    figures.

    The Claims For Relief portion of the complaint lists six counts:

    1. Direct Copyright Infringement - Public Performance

    2. Direct Copyright Infringement - Public Display

    3. Direct Copyright Infringement - Reproduction

    4. Inducement of Copyright Infringement

    5. Contributory Copyright Infringement

    6. Vicarious Copyright Infringement

    Remedies include the usual collection of statutory damages, actual
    damages, profits from infringement, permanent injunctions,
    reimbursement of legal fees, etc.

    http://news.com.com/pdf/ne/2007/ViacomYouTubeComplaint3-12-07.pdf
     
    Frank, Mar 14, 2007
    #9
  10. So you think Viacom gave Google/YouTube a "break" then? :)
    Why would they do that? Plantiff's usually go after MORE than
    they think the case is worth.
     
    Richard Crowley, Mar 14, 2007
    #10
  11. Frank

    Ray S Guest

    Well, either more than 10% of the earths population is viewing their
    stuff, of which much is just reruns of stuff from TV, or, there's this
    one guy who watches it over and over and over.....

    I believe one of Viacoms complaints was that Youtube had 'Private'
    viewing areas, and their complaint was that they could not tell if there
    was even more copyright infringement going on in there. Which is alot
    like the Sheriff complaining that they can't peer into your bedroom and
    see if your breaking any laws.
     
    Ray S, Mar 14, 2007
    #11
  12. Or Viacom could be paying a bunch of hackers to run the numbers up
    for the sake of the lawsuit evidence.
    Isn't that why there are Search Warrants?
    Or is that only in "Law & Order" land? :)

    Google seems willing enough to block things to please the
    totalitarian Communist governments of places like China.
     
    Richard Crowley, Mar 14, 2007
    #12
  13. Frank

    Frank Guest

    Oh, no, not by any means. Viacom could well have asked for more, I
    think.
    I think that last month's negotiations between Viacom and
    YouTube/Google broke down and ended without an agreement being signed
    and Viacom is upset that the "filtering technology" that
    YouTube/Google employs on files authorized by those content
    providers/copyright holders that have signed agreements with
    YouTube/Google isn't available to Viacom unless and until they sign an
    agreement with YouTube/Google.

    If I may quote from page 7 of the complaint...

    "Moreover, YouTube has deliberately withheld the application of
    available copyright protection measures in order to coerce rights
    holders to grant it licenses on favorable terms. YouTube's chief
    executive and cofounder Chad Hurley was quoted in the New York Times
    on February 3, 2007, as saying that YouTube has agreed to use
    filtering technology "to identify and possibly remove copyrighted
    material," but only after YouTube obtains a license from the copyright
    owner."

    Sounds like Viacom is accusing YouTube/Google of behavior that,
    essentially, could be called blackmail.

    Perhaps PTravel will weigh in with his thoughts on the matter,
    assuming that he's not involved with the suit in some way, that is.
     
    Frank, Mar 14, 2007
    #13
  14. Frank

    Frank Guest

    YouTube is now one of the most popular sites on the Net, currently in
    the top ten, I believe, and there are now an estimated 1.1 billion
    people on this planet with Internet access at work and/or at home.

    And even "reruns of stuff from TV" constitute copyrighted material,
    you know.

    I spent (thankfully) zero time with teenagers, but I understand that
    it's not uncommon for a teenager to get home from school and the first
    thing that they do is to go visit YouTube and MySpace.
    They do that now in the U.K., right? :)
     
    Frank, Mar 14, 2007
    #14
  15. Frank

    Guest Guest

    And conveniently they forgot to mention ~140,000 of those
    clips aren't available for purchase anywhere.

    The market cannot be faulted for seeking out content they
    want to see.
     
    Guest, Mar 14, 2007
    #15
  16. Whether something is for sale or not is the choice of the owner.
    The consumer has no standing in that decision.
    Unless you are an anarchist, of course, in which case
    someone may have decided to buy your car for 10 cents.
    Hope you can get home tonight.
     
    Richard Crowley, Mar 14, 2007
    #16
  17. Frank

    Frank Guest

    And according to the National Development and Reform Commission, some
    companies near and dear to our hearts seem willing enough to build
    $2.5 billion dollar chip plants there. :)

    (Original Chinese)
    http://www.sdpc.gov.cn/wzly/wstz/wstzgk/t20070313_121029.htm

    (Google translation for those who don't read Chinese)
    http://translate.google.com/transla...70313_121029.htm&langpair=zh|en&hl=en&ie=UTF8
     
    Frank, Mar 14, 2007
    #17
  18. Frank

    Guest Guest

    The simple fact is, if content providers want to make money
    from their product they need to make it available for sale.
     
    Guest, Mar 15, 2007
    #18
  19. Curiously enough, I wasn't even copied on the memo.
    I'm planning on retiring before the consequences of that
    decision explode in our face.

    OTOH, with a population like they have, and as long as
    we are willing to give them our money and technology,
    the US will be a bannana-republic within a generation
    (or two, if you are optimistic). Assuming the N.Koreans
    don't nuke us in the meantime.
     
    Richard Crowley, Mar 15, 2007
    #19
  20. Frank

    S. Whitmore Guest

    And a more simple fact is that the copyright owner gets to choose
    whether or not they want to distribute their intellectual property,
    regardless of whether money is involved or not. Consumers "demanding"
    something is not a reason to violate the law -- unless we're just
    going to go with mob rule, in which case let's just riot and sack the
    local Best Buy whenever we feel we have a "right" to a bigger TV...
     
    S. Whitmore, Mar 15, 2007
    #20
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