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YouTube Sued by Italian Broadcaster for $780M; Apparently Doesn’t Understand Why



If Google has a legal achilles heel right now, it’s got to be YouTube. The search engine knew it was buying a can of worms, when it set aside $200 million in anticipation of potential lawsuits. Today, Italian broadcaster Mediaset decides that it likes what it sees in the Viacom copyright case, so it too has filed a $780 million lawsuit against YouTube.

According to Reuters:

Mediaset said a sample analysis of YouTube at June 10 found "at least 4,643 videos and clips owned by us, equivalent to more than 325 hours of transmission without having rights".

Mediaset said this was equal to the loss of 315,672 days of broadcasting by its three TV channels.

I think YouTube’s shrug of the shoulders response is hilarious. Reuters says "a YouTube spokeswoman said it did not see the need for the legal case."

Really, YouTube? Don’t see the need, huh? OK, well I’m sure Mediaset will just scurry off and not worry about the copyrighted content being uploaded every day. Perhaps, Mediaset could apologize for the inconvenience and maybe wax Google’s jumbo jet while it’s at it. :-)

  • http://www.jozsoft.com/blog/ Joe Hall

    Man, this is an interesting time to work in web media. I can’t wait to see how the future pans out for YouTube et all.

    Joe Hall’s last blog post..Hitwise data misses the mark when it comes to Real Estate.

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  • http://seologia.com.ar Seologia

    Can: open.
    Worms: all over the place.

    Seologia’s last blog post..¡Por el poder de Facebook!

  • Beans

    Why do I have a feeling this is just the beginning of suits like this across Europe – they just lost that one in Spain.

    Curious clip came out today – Schmidt talking about the “illegal” content on YT – don’t think he’s been so blunt before (maybe he’s changing his tune?).

    It’s about 2:15 into this thing: http://adage.com/brightcove/single.php?bcpid=1370868150&bctid=1699238280

  • http://www.fiftystudio.com Fifty Studio

    I’d hope there is some love to shown to Google just because this company sat back and waited.

  • http://www.prioritywindows.com/catalog/Custom-Valances-orderby0-p-1-c-335.html Valance

    Yes, the Viacom battle probably has taught them a lesson or two. Nevertheless, the internet is still uncharted territory with fewer rules. Lawsuits like this, regardless of the outcome, surely push the internet towards more regulation. I’m interested to see what battles like this will collectively do to the future of the internet.

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  • http://www.adoperationsonline.com Otilia Otlacan

    Wonder when will Google throw the dead copyright cat into the users’ backyard and publicly chase some of them for breaking the TOS when uploading content they don’t own?

    Otilia Otlacan’s last blog post..Creatives Showcase: The We8 Side of Coke

  • http://www.eway.tv Anthony Bain

    I hope the court sees sense, YT has a very clear policy about uploading copyrighted material and does put the responsibilty rightly on to the poster, if the court decides against YT then why should the plaintiffs stop there, facebook, myspace and countless others who spread the material should also be held responsible if YT losses.

    If I had any say I would place the blame on the poster, the music industry has started to take action against copyright pirates no matter what their age or staus for downloaded copyrighted music, the same should go for video and for those that lifted it.

  • http://www.eraserve.com Andrew

    I agree with Anthony Bain, with a clear policy this is not YT’s fault.
    The way I see it these companies really only need to request of YT to take the material down. If any lawsuits are to be filed it should be against users. It is the users who upload the content. Therefore it is clearly the users who are responsible, if they take the risk of violating the copyrights they should be willing to pay the price… It is high time that the offenders get slapped with the lawsuits and not the medium which they used to commit the offense. This fixes nothing, if it is not YT getting the Videos it will be some other medium… All one needs to do is look back in the past, anyone remember Napster? What are those users doing now to share their pirated material?
    Suing the YT will not fix the problem.

  • http://www.richkits.com CJordan

    I agree. Youtube can’t really police every video being uploaded. That would require alot of employees. So much so, that paying all their wages would probably prove the youtube site to be unprofitable.