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Censorship Your Rights Online

The Algorithmic Copyright Cops: Streaming Video's Robotic Overlords 194

Posted by samzenpus
from the you-can't-show-that dept.
thomst writes "Geeta Dayal of Wired's Threat Level blog posts an interesting report about bot-mediated automatic takedowns of streaming video. He mentions the interruption of Michelle Obama's speech at the DNC, and the blocking of NASA's coverage of Mars rover Curiosity's landing by a Scripps News Service bot, but the story really drills down on the abrupt disappearance of the Hugo Award's live stream of Neil Gaiman's acceptance speech for his Doctor Who script. (Apparently the trigger was a brief clip from the Doctor Who episode itself, despite the fact that it was clearly a case of fair use.) Dayal points the finger at Vobile, whose content-blocking technology was used by Ustream, which hosted the derailed coverage of the Hugos."
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The Algorithmic Copyright Cops: Streaming Video's Robotic Overlords

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 06, 2012 @08:06PM (#41255267)

    Might want to double check your pronouns.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 06, 2012 @08:51PM (#41255671)

    A lot of people (especially online) have a big misunderstanding of what "fair use" is.
    The misconception is that there's a set of rights that we have to use copyrighted material, and when the copyright holder doesn't respect those rights he's just being a jerk.
    Actually, "fair use" is just a defense you can use when sued for copyright infringement.
    And it's almost entirely up to the discretion of the court to decide whether or not you'll get off with that defense.
    There's no actual set of rules, and that's the way the law is written.

  • Lenz v. Universal (Score:5, Informative)

    by tepples (727027) <{moc.liamg} {ta} {selppet}> on Thursday September 06, 2012 @09:19PM (#41255881) Homepage Journal

    media outlets could certainly make an argument that such automated "take downs" constitute an unfair burden and so are invalid.

    And the legal theory on this could develop from Lenz v. Universal: a copyright owner's representative must consider fair use and other defenses in good faith before filing a notice of claimed infringement under OCILLA.

  • by symbolset (646467) * on Thursday September 06, 2012 @10:04PM (#41256131) Journal
    Actually, Viacom sued google for distributing on youtube content uploaded by their own employees, both from their own offices and the employees homes.
  • by mark-t (151149) <markt@lynx.b c . ca> on Thursday September 06, 2012 @10:29PM (#41256281) Journal

    Actually, "fair use" is just a defense you can use when sued for copyright infringement.

    In Canada, the equivalent concept is not a defense for infringement, the equivalent concept creates an exemption to infringement in the first place. So, if your usage was fair, as determined by law, then your defense if you should happen to get sued for infringement would simply be that you didn't infringe on copyright in the first place.

  • by jthill (303417) on Thursday September 06, 2012 @11:19PM (#41256521)

    PP is, in every relevant way false.

    Fair use is, by statute declaration, not copyright infringement at all. Copyright holders have no authority at all to forbid any fair use.

    PP might as well have said a lot of people have a big misunderstanding of what "innocence" is, that "innocence" is just a defense you can use.

    The criteria for fair use are laid out in statute law and have decades of case law to back them. Courts have the same discretion in finding the boundaries of fair use as they have in finding the boundaries of any other law, and the same responsibility. There's nothing at all remarkable about that discretion, it's why they're called "Judge".

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