Linked by Eugenia Loli on Sat 27th Oct 2007 22:34 UTC, submitted by Kishe
Legal When her 0.29" family video was taken down by YouTube on the request of Universal MPG, the affected mother of two struck back with a lawsuit against Universal with the help of the EFF. While technically her family video might have been a copyright infringement as she had no license to include Prince's song as a background score, it is encouraging to see the public fighting back against restrictive laws that get in the way of their every day lives. My Take: I stated my own opinion on the matter on my personal blog.
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legal ramifications
by oma2la on Sat 27th Oct 2007 23:19 UTC
oma2la
Member since:
2005-07-05

Describing this as a restrictive law indicates that you probably don't fully understand the situation. The RIAA and Prince really do not care about home-videos: the various Performers' Rights entities are not going to sue you for recording your birthday party. YouTube however is a purely commercial venture. It doesn't host clips of your cat dancing or your grandma playing basketball as a public service or to be kind. YouTube hosts videos to make money, now and in the future. That's their only reason for doing it. Now their business model is extremely clever, as they are able to get mostly amateurs to hand over their artistic works (that is, your birthday video or dancing cat film) without asking for any money in return. That in itself is a threat to professionals in the entertainment industry. Now you may not feel much sympathy for these entertainment industry professionals, but you cannot blame them for wanting to protect their revenue streams. The Prince track in the background of a party is an extreme example, but in legal terms the RIAA will be allowing a precedent to be set if they do not pursue all infringement on YouTube diligently. There will be de facto fair use, and frankly that isn't fair to those such as musicians and singers who earn their living in entertainment.

If you upload a video to YouTube, you are entering the world of business with all the attached legal ramifications. YouTube knows this, and cannot rely on the legal naivety of its content-suppliers (unpaid regular people like us) as a barrier against its obligations to performers under the law.

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