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The Internet Piracy Technology

Warner Brothers: Automated Takedown Notices Hit Files That Weren't Ours 157

itwbennett writes "In a court case between and Hollywood studios, Warner Brothers admitted they sent takedown orders for thousands of files they didn't own or control. Using an automated takedown tool provided by Hotfile, Warner Brothers used automated software crawlers based on keywords to generate legal takedown orders. This is akin to not holding the Post Office liable for what people mail, or the phone companies liable for what people say. But the flip side is that hosters must remove files when receiving a legal takedown notice from the copyright holder — even when the copyright holders themselves don't know what material they actually own."
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Warner Brothers: Automated Takedown Notices Hit Files That Weren't Ours

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  • by Secret Rabbit ( 914973 ) on Saturday November 12, 2011 @02:27AM (#38033062) Journal

    Yes, it is. However, if one submits such a false take down notice, the according to the DMCA they can be charged with perjury. It's too bad that (to my knowledge) no-one has taken advantage of this...

  • Re:Takedown? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by slimjim8094 ( 941042 ) <> on Saturday November 12, 2011 @02:49AM (#38033136)

    It's perjury. Which is ostensibly better than fines.

    Here's hoping

  • Re:Simple Solution (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Kjella ( 173770 ) on Saturday November 12, 2011 @03:16AM (#38033210) Homepage

    Media companies engaging in such scattershot tactics should therefore be required to host a database listing every copyright they own. That way if they send a takedown notice for video X to YouTube, someone at YouTube can check the video, check the database, and say "yep, that shouldn't be here" or "nope, this request must have been sent in error."

    So if the database lists a movie title, YouTube is supposed to know every scene in every movie and know if the content is infringing? Or did you mean to say they have to put up a movie server so YouTube can compare clip against clip? And how exactly would it limit their scattershot practice if YouTube gets all the hard work validating or dismissing everything? The part about "we own this copyright" is right there in the DMCA notice, under penalty of perjury even. The question is if the copyright they have apply to the clip they're trying to take down or not and there's no easy compare function between List<Copyright> and List<VideoClip>. Even if they put up an "original" there's a million kind of settings and clips and compilations and whatnot that don't qualify as fair use, you try to write that fuzzy matching. Quite frankly I'm not sure what you're trying to suggest, but I'm pretty sure it doesn't make any sense.

  • by justforgetme ( 1814588 ) on Saturday November 12, 2011 @03:17AM (#38033214) Homepage

    ... they have to in good faith attest that they have the copyrights to those items they send takedown notices for ....

    The global judicial infrastructure is not based on good faith. You can't go into a court say you own a country and be granted legislative priviledges to that without research to affirm your claims. So why should individuals be forced to follow other individuals' claims in good faith? With the same concept spamers would have to just order you to install spyware.
    That doesn't seem very consistent or legit or even healthy reasoning.

  • Re:Takedown? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mandelbr0t ( 1015855 ) on Saturday November 12, 2011 @05:11AM (#38033502) Journal
    "Spray and pray" indeed. I received a couple of DMCA takedown notices... and I live in Canada. They don't even know what jurisdiction they're sending these automated notices to. Maybe it is a difficult task to keep tabs on the entire Internet protecting their copyrights. I'd say that the fact that they can't do it reliably means they are going about it in the wrong way.
  • by oDDmON oUT ( 231200 ) on Saturday November 12, 2011 @07:35AM (#38033882)

    Or a preview of life in these United States in two or three years? This is precisely what will happen when those charged with conducting the business of the nation decide instead to legislate moral behavior.

Someday your prints will come. -- Kodak