Blogs

Google & YouTube Not Liable Copyright Infringement

06.24.10

Viacom lost its $1 billion lawsuit against Google and YouTube for alleged copyright infringement when a judge granted summary judgment. YouTube’s defense was that it used the “safe harbor” protection of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) where YouTube would remove allegedly infringing videos after being notified, and after three offenses a poster would be banned from YouTube. On June 23, 2010 US District Judge Louis Stanton granted YouTube and Google’s motions in defense of claims brought by Via and other plaintiffs. In the 30 page Opinion Judge Stanton pointed out that “over 24 hours of new video-viewing time is uploaded to the YouTube website every minute.”  I know that YouTube is responsive to the DCMA takedown requests because YouTube has removed videos which have infringed copyrights of my clients.  The DCMA takedown procedures rules are part of YouTube’s Terms of Service.

Viacom to Appeal

Viacom plans an appeal, but at this moment this appears to be a monumental ruling for Google and YouTube which helps define Copyright law on the Internet. As a trial lawyer my experience is that Judges rarely grant summary judgment (there are no facts in dispute, and the moving party wins on the law without a trial).  It is more likely than not that Google and YouTube will prevail on the appeal since the trial Judge granted summary judgment.  This case is important given size of YouTube and its role in changing Social Media.

YouTube Turns 5

When YouTube celebrated its fifth birthday in May, 2010 it announced that it passed “two billion video views a day.” YouTube has perennially lost money so there were many analysts who criticized Google’s $1.65 billion purchase of YouTube in 2006, which was made worse when Viacom brought its Copyright infringement lawsuit in 2007. YouTube has been developing partnerships with music labels to compete with "Hulu.com, the joint venture of Fox, NBC and ABC." So Judge Stanton’s Order should help clear Google and YouTube’s path for success and bring clarify about the DMCA.

The publications contained in this site do not constitute legal advice. Legal advice can only be given with knowledge of the client's specific facts. By putting these publications on our website we do not intend to create a lawyer-client relationship with the user. Materials may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements. This information should in no way be taken as an indication of future results.

Search Tips:

You may use the wildcard symbol (*) as a root expander.  A search for "anti*" will find not only "anti", but also "anti-trust", "antique", etc.

Entering two terms together in a search field will behave as though an "OR" is being used.  For example, entering "Antique Motorcars" as a Client Name search will find results with either word in the Client Name.

Operators

AND and OR may be used in a search.  Note: they must be capitalized, e.g., "Project AND Finance." 

The + and - sign operators may be used.  The + sign indicates that the term immediately following is required, while the - sign indicates to omit results that contain that term. E.g., "+real -estate" says results must have "real" but not "estate".

To perform an exact phrase search, surround your search phrase with quotation marks.  For example, "Project Finance".

Searches are not case sensitive.

back to top