Viacom vs YouTube spat slathered in F-words
Poetry is no place for a heart that's a whore
Media giant Viacom and Google-owned video sharing site YouTube dished up some colourful court documents last Friday that showed how little love exists between the sparring pair.
Google, for its part, asked the court to overlook the fact that some of its wonks labelled Viacom as "copyright bastards" and "a-holes", in what is now a long-running legal spat between the companies.
Mountain View hit back by listing a scattering of F-words it alleged had been made by Viacom execs, including such witty titbits as "fuck you, Google bastards" and "fucking assholes".
In other words, both sides know how to employ a few choice swears against their sworn media enemy.
The whole sorry affair kicked off in March 2007 when Viacom filed a $1bn lawsuit against Google, alleging that YouTube was responsible for Viacom-owned clips posted to the site.
Now more than three years since the dispute first became public, both firms are continuing to fight their corner by publishing playground-grade documents about what the other one did or didn't say.
All of which suggests the disagreement will run and run, and it's highly unlikely that the two firms will kiss and make up anytime soon.
Such a sweet story...
Once upon a time there were two large media compaines that were enemies.
And the lawyers made lots of money and lived happily ever after.
Why don't these companies get it?
I just don't understand why these entertainment companies don't get it.
Now yes, I do realize that there are no shortage of more-or-less illegally uploaded video clips out there. Don't get me wrong--I don't claim that Youtube or Google is 100% in the right on this. I am sure that a lot of the users who have uploaded the material in question didn't really intend to infringe anyone's rights--they did it because the material might be hard to find, really worth seeing or some other relatively good reason. (There I go again, always assuming the best. I also know that this is not 100% correct.)
I can't help but think that if the two sides weren't so busy swearing at one another, that Viacom could find a way to work with this, and learn from the experiences of the music industry here. I'd hope that there was some intelligent person at Viacom that could say "you know, swearing and suing our way through this is no way to do it". There has got to be a way to make all parties happy here.
The music industry has come around to the point of taking a few tentative steps out of their shell. How long will it take for the television and movie companies to do the same?
The question I /really/ want to ask, however, is this: when is someone going to pick up the muckrake and start giving copyright law the reform it so desperately needs? (It's actually the most seriously broken for those of us into vintage computing and the preservation of such, but that has little to do with this problem.)
I haven't heard of Grokster (as mentioned in the google link)
So I google it, and got a threatening message, so I've emailed them the following:
Subject: Do not DARE threaten me
I just googled 'grokster' to see what it was and got this from you:
YOUR IP ADDRESS IS 184.108.40.206 AND HAS BEEN LOGGED.
Don't think you can't get caught. You are not anonymous.
I have never downloaded any illegal material, but if this is thew
way you treat your customers, then I'm not surprised that people
hold you in such low regard.