FOX News allows clips of Bill Clinton interview on YouTube

September 27, 2006

Apparently, FOX News realized that its demand to YouTube to remove Chris Wallace’s heated interview with Bill Clinton from YouTube’s site made no sense at all.  Webloggin reports that his and other removed clips of the Clinton interview were restored on YouTube.

As I reported yesterday here, I think it only helps FOX News to have this much-talked-about video surfacing all over the Internet, even on sites that haven’t asked for permission.  There’s no better way to create buzz for the FOX News division.  And there’s nothing in the Copyright Act that says the copyright owner can’t impliedly consent to such uses.

Maybe MySpace did not beat YouTube, after all

September 27, 2006

News:  Several commentators have posited explanations for why MySpace may have come out of head in a survey of the number of streamed videos from its site, even over YouTube.  I discussed the comScore survey here. 

Loren Baker of Search Engine Journal points out: (1) MySpace automatically streams video upon entry to a user’s page, meaning that if a friend visits your MySpace page several times a day, the videos will stream each time.  (2) a recent study of number of hits placed YouTube first, with 45.45%, and MySpace videos second, with 22.99%

Perhaps more importantly, Baker concludes:  “Regardless, Google, Yahoo and MSN still trail behind newcomers MySpace and YouTube in one or more studies, which should have the major media outlets and search engines looking for ways to plan to do battle with these new media outlets.”

Analysis:  Baker’s explanation of the comScore survey seems fairly persuasive.  To the extent MySpace allows automatic streaming without the need for the user to click on a video, that would raise the possibility of an inflated number of streamed videos.   

Video of Bill Clinton going ballistic on FOX’s Chris Wallace

September 27, 2006

News: On Sunday, former President Bill Clinton got into an angry verbal joust with FOX News’s Chris Wallace, who questioned his record in going after Bin Laden.  Things deteriorated to the point where President Clinton accused Wallace of carrying out a “conservative hit job” on him.

Highlights of the verbal joust were shown on all the networks Sunday night.  FOX News put the video up on its website.  Eventually, clips made their way onto YouTube and other sites.  At some point today, however, FOX News, as the copyright owner, reportedly asked YouTube to remove all the clips of the interview from its site.  YouTube did, consistent with its policy of taking down copyrighted content when notice is provided by the copyright owner.  YouTube had a message indicating:   “This video has been removed at the request of copyright owner Fox News Network, LLC because its content was used without permission.” (More here)

Now, however, it appears that clips of the interview have resurfaced on YouTube.  (See here)  This suggests either that FOX News had a change of heart and is allowing the clips to be played on YouTube, or other users of YouTube have posted the clips more recently. 

Analysis:  It’s hard not to be a little bit cynical about the entire interview, on both sides.  A lot of hullabaloo is being made over what seems to be a pretty insignificant event from a news or policy standpoint. For what it’s worth, I think FOX News should just let the clips run freely on the Internet.  The clip has already aired so much on TV on different networks.  It will only help promote their news division to allow the clips to play freely on the Internet.