YouTube allows media companies to block copyrighted content

November 14th, 2007 - 2:20 am ICT by admin  
“Video ID service, which has been beta-tested by Disney and Time Warner, will give media companies the option of blocking their copyrighted content from the site or requesting that YouTube split advertising revenue with them,” Variety.com reported.

While YouTube has previously licensed technology from Audible Magic to look for infringing music on the site, it decided to build the Video ID service on its own.

According to sources, though the site is not specific about its revenue-sharing deals, but some sources estimate that roughly 70 to 80 percent of the revenue could go to the media companies.

As per the company’s top executives, the move would ensure better working relationships with the media.

“We are looking to build working relationships with media companies,” the website quoted YouTube’s Product Manager David King, as saying.

Lawsuits from rights-holders like Viacom or Prince, who last month has threatened to sue YouTube for allegedly encouraging copyright violation.

“I have not seen a filtering technology that could understand the nuances of fair use,” says Corynne McSherry, a staff attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) in San Francisco.

EFF is handling several cases in which content was allegedly removed from YouTube for spurious reasons.

However, YouTube executives insist that the Video ID service isn’t a response to Viacom’s one billion dollars lawsuit, filed in March.

“We continue to believe that the lawsuit is without merit,” said Zahava Levine, YouTube’s chief counsel. We’re delighted that Google appears to be stepping up to its responsibility and ending the practice of profiting from infringement,” says Mike Fricklas, Viacom general counsel.

The company is not ready to divulge the working of the system - for instance, whether it would block a clip using 20 seconds of footage from “Knocked Up,” but not one containing just 15 seconds.

Analysts believe that this move could help You Tube in selling and displaying more advertisement on its videos, once they get media companies to give them the go-ahead.

“Until this technology was in place, there was no reason for them to go out with an ad model and say to people, We’re making a lot of money from advertising,’ because then suddenly, the lawsuit threat triples,” said Forrester Research analyst James McQuivey. (ANI)

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