Viacom had claimed that “tens of thousands of videos” based on its copyrighted works had been posted on YouTube, and that both YouTube and its owner Google had known about it but had done nothing about it.
But District Judge Louis Stanton said in his ruling: “Mere knowledge of prevalence of such activity in general is not enough. The provider need not monitor or seek out facts indicating such activity.”
Google and YouTube had argued that they were entitled to “safe harbour” protection under digital copyright law because they had insufficient notice of particular alleged offences.
Judge Stanton agreed, saying that when “YouTube was given notices, it removed the material… it is thus protected from liability” under a provision in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.
If I record an episode of South Park to DVDs and then proceed to make copies for all of my friends, is Verbatim responsible for making blanks? Panasonic for making DVD players that can play a burned disc? Old media shouldn’t fight YouTube as a medium. Instead they should publish their content through it and attempt to generate add revenue in that fashion.