Viacom sues Google, YouTube for $1 billion

MTV owner Viacom Inc. said Tuesday it has sued YouTube and its corporate parent Google Inc. in federal court for alleged copyright infringement and is seeking more than $1 billion in damages.

Viacom claims that the more than 160,000 unauthorized video clips from its cable networks, which also include Comedy Central, VH1 and Nickelodeon, have been available on the popular video-sharing Web site.

The lawsuit marks a sharp escalation of long-simmering tensions between Viacom and YouTube. Last month Viacom demanded that YouTube remove more than 100,000 unauthorized clips after several months of talks between the companies broke down.

View: MSNBC News

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I agree, now if it was an un-aired episode of something sure, there is a case, but if its previously aired material then there is nothing to do. It is just like letting someone come over and watch TV. Plus YouTube has nothing to do with what users put on, if they monitored every little thing there wouldnt be anything left on the site, thats why they have their flag system. No one is at fault but Viacom. If you think your shows can make you a billion dollars you got problems cause I havent paid anything to see them nor search for them on YouTube. User Created content is 20 times better than this mega production content.

Get Laid Viacom.

Correct me if I am wrong, but Viacom is the one who released these videos into public domain in the first place when they aird them on TV. People just recorded them and uploaded them to YouTube. There's nothing wrong with that to my knowledge because:

- the logo is still there (proper reference)
- YouTube isn't reselling them and there's no direct money gain, these videos are free to watch for anyone, just like there were on TV.

It's quite different from buying/renting DVD and then uploading a scene from it which is a copyrighted material.

Dear Viacom,

Welcome to the new media age, old media dinosaur. If you don't learn to adapt, Comet Internet will render your kind extinct.

Google

Sooo, adapt means just let people give their material away freely? I hate Viacom but sorry, Google is in the wrong here.

TRC said,
Sooo, adapt means just let people give their material away freely? I hate Viacom but sorry, Google is in the wrong here.

WOW!!! Have you ever been brainwashed by the MPAA and the RIAA!! Just because a technology *could* be used to violate IP rights, doesn't make it "wrong" or illegal. If that was the case, copy machines should be considered illegal and Xerox be held accountable because they know that people are using their machines to photocopy copywrited works and they haven't done enough to protect IP rights of others. The Supreme Court upheld that this view is w/o merit in the Sony Betamax case.

Viacom really are idout's, instead of excepting google's conditions and making some money from it, they go off wanting to do there own thing shooting them self in the leg.

Small website zero turnover, polite email or maybe a threat from Viacom.

Big Bucks company running big bucks website, legal action and huge demands for money.

The money this company makes comes from those that pay subscriptions that make the programmes for the company to profit, so will the people that subscribe get a wind fall?

I doubt it.

This is greed motivated thats all.

Ugh, stupid.

Viacom could have just sent DMCA notices to Google, if Google didn't take them down, they they could have sued.

And I can't see Google ignoring a DMCA request (considering they do it quite often with their search results)

Edit: It's DMCA not DCMA, silly me.

So basically they are suing because they were getting free advertisement

What they don't realize, is that if people have to go to some crappy tv site just view clips of a show they probobly will just give up. They will do it if they can go to one site and do a simple search and have all the video clips from everything in one place. Viacom could be embracing this, not sueing over it.

warwagon said,
So basically they are suing because they were getting free advertisement

What they don't realize, is that if people have to go to some crappy tv site just view clips of a show they probobly will just give up. They will do it if they can go to one site and do a simple search and have all the video clips from everything in one place. Viacom could be embracing this, not sueing over it.

Why would they embrace it. They are not making any money of of Youtube so why would they be happy. I would think that most of the people that know About Youtube know what they are looking for most of the time and if not then they will search, watch the video and then that's it. Of all of the episodes of 24 I have watched on Youtube, I never rushed out to get the DVD boxset afterwards because I already seen what I wanted to see. I'm not saying some people never do rush to get the boxset but I think think it's at the same ratio of people that just watch and run.

(V)eGa said,
Why would they embrace it. They are not making any money of of Youtube so why would they be happy. I would think that most of the people that know About Youtube know what they are looking for most of the time and if not then they will search, watch the video and then that's it. Of all of the episodes of 24 I have watched on Youtube, I never rushed out to get the DVD boxset afterwards because I already seen what I wanted to see. I'm not saying some people never do rush to get the boxset but I think think it's at the same ratio of people that just watch and run.

In most cases, exposure to a show is so hard, it would be darn near impossible to get people to watch a show.

For example, The Daily Show and The Colbert Report are 2x as popular BECAUSE they were on YouTube. Plus, I actually watch the show on TV now because I don't feel like waiting!

Now perhaps, Viacom should instead stop suing because a widespead backlash is worse. Remember, if you take away what the people want, they will never forget it. (Sony vs. Lik-Sang)

Oh x) Damn This Cruel World! Why does everything have to be so confusing.

If you are American, it is undoubtedly 1,000,000,000. This amount is known to traditionally minded British people as `a thousand million', and by some more adventurous ones as a 'milliard', though this word has not made as much headway in English as in some other European languages. A trillion is then 1,000,000,000,000, and so on.

If you are British, on the other hand, a billion may be 1,000,000,000,000 (a million million), following the older convention.

http://www.askoxford.com/asktheexperts/faq...utwords/billion

jeez.... everything these days is a lawsuit. those sue happy americans. I tell you. always money to be made somewhere. what a joke.

I thought they would be happy with all the free advertising from the people who post video clips from their shows.

what a nut case group they are. lol


Yeah... how dare those American companies protect property they legally own? How dare they protect intellectual property... They are crazy :confused:

I'm glad personally. YouTube seems like a leashless entity that can't or won't control itself. If they can't or won't then they deserve all they get. In fact, I'd rather it just be closed down, period.

Hey SniperX,

Die in a fire. Clearly the current IP model doesn't work in today's environment. I have an idea, instead of shutting down what has become the essence of buzzword "web 2.0" why don't you develop a system that controls or defines copyrighted material. Oh wait...you can't. Viacom and all the other dinosaurs would be better off embracing youtube and recognizing that this is free marketing.

Of course! Why obey copyright laws and respect intellectual property when we can steal it and claim it as free advertising for products we will never buy? You should really head one of those corporations and see how much your shareholders love you when your "free advertising" costs you millions (or a billion if you are Viacom) of dollars in lost revenue.

IMHO, the users of YouTube are the only ones violating IP laws. I don't think you should hold a technology/service responsible for the actions of the users of that technology/service. The Supremes agreed with this in the Sony Betamax case.

Ask yourself what's next? Are we going to start holding Xerox responsible for people photocopying copyrighted magazine articles?

So Viacom you gonna sue everybody for using DVR and VCR recorders as well to record your shows, because it's the same thing.

Recording a show on DVD, DVR, VCR etc. is not the same thing as uploading a video to a website where everyone has access to it. Now maybe you could make that a valid comparison if you made multiple copies and gave them out for free to everyone in the world but otherwise it's not the same.

tao muon said,
Recording a show on DVD, DVR, VCR etc. is not the same thing as uploading a video to a website where everyone has access to it. Now maybe you could make that a valid comparison if you made multiple copies and gave them out for free to everyone in the world but otherwise it's not the same.

A Judge in Canada disagrees with your statement. In fact, P2P sharing is (at the time) legal in Canada. It's been determined that it's the same as a library. A library hold thousands of copyrighted materials. Photocopying these materials is permitted, and thus so is P2P sharing in Canada.

Funny how as soon as a big name like Google is involved all of a sudden YouTube is attacked. It's not YouTube they are really after, they want to squash Google. Is Microsoft behind this... Hmmm....

Bet google are regretting buying YouTube. Nothing but trouble!!!! They are in a tough situation. The reason YouTube is becoming so popular is because of the very clips Viacom are ordering YouTube to remove! I sense a downward spiral for Google's YouTube!

PS: Very well done to previous YouTube owners! Got out just in time! lol

neelj said,
PS: Very well done to previous YouTube owners! Got out just in time! lol

Time was never an issue. The only reason they weren't sued is because they didn't have any money to take from them! :P

Spookie said,

Time was never an issue. The only reason they weren't sued is because they didn't have any money to take from them! :P

Thats true!! The flood gates were opened as soon as money was up for grabs.

Bet google are regretting buying YouTube.

They knew what they were getting and how much copyright infringing material there was on YouTube.
This is coming as no surprise to them. Even your average geek knew this, and most likely the lawyers at Google. :-p

Google simply has to be expecting they'll win this, but I'm not so sure...

Haha!!!

I'm going to bring down your youtube website with my "laser" in the project code named the alan parsons project.

A10 said,
Haha!!!

I'm going to bring down your youtube website with my "laser" in the project code named the alan parsons project.

Yeah bring on the "laser"

Mr.ed said,
1 Billion Gajillion Gazazillion dollars.....

hey now thats unauthroized use of Dr. Evil, now the MPAA will sue you for $1billion also :ponder:

neufuse said,
hey now thats unauthroized use of Dr. Evil, now the MPAA will sue you for $1billion also :ponder:


LOL....! Yeah... i'd better be careful....

They could try to get me with Preparation H..... the last of preparations and most lethal of ALL! (And they think it feels good on the whole...)

And the best first comment on a neowin news post....ever; award goes to............

Seriously though, they should have a special court and law system so that all these corporations can bitch at each other as much as they want, sue the crap out of each other.... and the rest of us never have to hear about it. Viacom has MADE money from youtube, I can't imagine where they will have lost a single dime.
There should be a way to define this as a "stupid sueing" case which can be rushed through and called "a waste of everyone's time" in a matter of hours.