According to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, YouTube is issuing too many take down notices, using its automated "Content ID" system which fails to take into account the user's Fair Use rights:
YouTube's January Fair Use MassacreEFF is offering assistance to those who have been victimized:
Commentary by Fred von Lohmann
This is what it's come to. Teenagers singing "Winter Wonderland" being censored off YouTube.
Fair use has always been at risk on YouTube, thanks to abusive DMCA takedown notices sent by copyright owners (sometimes carelessly, sometimes not). But in the past several weeks, two things have made things much worse for those who want to sing a song, post an a capella tribute, or set machinima to music.
First, it appears that more and more copyright owners are using YouTube's automated copyright filtering system (known as the Content ID system), which tests all videos looking for a "match" with "fingerprints" provided by copyright owners.
Second, thanks to a recent spat between YouTube and Warner Music Group, YouTube's Content ID tool is now being used to censor lots and lots of videos (previously, Warner just silently shared in the advertising revenue for the videos that included a "match" to its music).
EFF wants to help. If Warner Music Group took down your video, ask yourself if your video is (1) noncommercial (i.e., no commercial advertisements or YouTube Partner videos) and (2) includes substantial original material contributed by you (i.e., no verbatim copies of Warner music videos). If so, and you'd like to counternotice but are afraid of getting sued, we'd like to hear from you. We can't promise to take every case, but neither will we stand by and watch semi-automated takedowns trample fair use.Complete article at http://eff.org
It was recently held that DMCA notices must be based upon an assessment that the alleged infringement does not fall within Fair Use, in Lenz v. Universal Music, a case in which EFF represents the plaintiff.
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