Viacom v. YouTube: District Court Again Dismisses All Copyright Claims Against YouTube

Judge using his gavelOn remand from the Second Circuit, which had partially reversed the district court’s summary judgment dismissing Viacom’s copyright infringement claims against YouTube, the district court has again dismissed all claims on DMCA safe harbor grounds.

After Judge Stanton first dismissed Viacom’s case, holding on summary judgment that YouTube was shielded by the DMCA safe harbor, the Second Circuit reversed and remanded for further briefing due to questions regarding, inter alia, whether the record evidence established (1) YouTube’s actual or “red flag” knowledge of specific infringing activity, (2) willful blindness to such activity, and (3) whether YouTube had the right and ability to control the infringing activity.

On remand, and after further briefing, Judge Stanton again granted summary judgment on all counts to YouTube. [Read more…]

Second Circuit Reverses YouTube Decision: DMCA Safe Harbor Might Not Apply

Breaking News: The Second Circuit has just reversed the district court’s summary judgment ruling in the Viacom v. YouTube case, holding  a reasonable jury could find that YouTube did not qualify for the DMCA safe harbor.  More analysis to follow, but in the meantime here is the decision:

UMG v Veoh: Ninth Circuit Affirms DMCA Safe Harbor for Veoh

Copyright Into Infinity
Creative Commons License photo credit: Post-Software

The Ninth Circuit has affirmed the district court’s decision that Veoh’s user-generated video service was protected from UMG’s copyright infringement claims by the DMCA safe harbor provisions.  In a comprehensive and mostly well-reasoned 49-page opinion, the court methodically rejected each of UMG’s arguments as to why the safe harbor should not apply. [Read more…]

Copyright Office Proposed Rulemaking on Designation of DMCA Agents For Takedown Notices

The Copyright Office has announced a proposed rulemaking to update the procedures and requirements for online service providers to designate an agent to receive notices of copyright infringement under the DMCA safe harbor provisions.

One of the key proposed changes is the Office’s move to electronic filing of the designations, which would be stored in a publicly accessible online database.  This would be a great improvement over the current paper-based system.  The Office also proposes requiring each online service provider to verify the accuracy of the designation every two years, and allowing OSPs to delegate maintenance of the designations to third parties.  There are lots of other proposed changes (and lots of new proposed fees), and specific requests for public input.

The Office has published proposed new regulations, and is seeking public comments, which may be submitted at the Copyright Office website.

Here is a copy of the Notice from the Federal Register, with all the details:

 

MP3tunes Summary Judgment Decision: Defendants Only Liable For Specific Songs In Takedown Notice That Were Not Taken Down


Creative Commons License photo credit: Tac Anderson

The Southern District of New York has issued its ruling in the Capitol Records v. MP3tunes case, granting partial summary judgment for each side. The bottom line is that MP3tunes and its founder, Michael Robertson (also the founder of MP3.com), are only liable for the infringement of sound recordings that were specifically identified in DMCA takedown notices but not removed from users’ accounts.

One amazing nugget hidden in the first footnote of the decision (page 12), is the court’s holding that the DMCA safe harbor applies to pre-1972 sound recordings, even though such recordings are not protected by federal copyright. This holding, if noticed and followed by Justice Kapnick, should destroy the claims brought by UMG Recordings against Grooveshark in New York State court. UMG brought these claims in state court, limited to common law copyright infringement for pre-’72 recordings, as an attempted end-run around the DMCA.

There are lots of other points of interest in the decision, which I will get to soon. In the meantime, I wanted to post the decision as quickly as possible for your reading enjoyment: