Beyonce fall still a big hit on YouTube

August 1, 2007

News: As I reported earlier, video clips of Beyonce falling down stairs at her concert in Orlando last week have become very popular on YouTube. Although it appeared that YouTube removed a number of the clips for “terms of use” violation (either because Sony BMG sent a DMCA notice or because Beyonce didn’t consent to the video), YouTube seems to be allowing the clips of Beyonce now on YouTube.

The video clip that I pointed out before (posted on July 25) is still up on YouTube, as are a number of other Beyonce clips.

Analysis: It’s hard to know what this means. It could mean that Sony BMG took away its DMCA notice or limited it to allow some of the clips. I find it hard to believe that YouTube would unilaterally make a decision to keep the clips up on its own after taking some down.

Viacom v. YouTube hearing: YouTube says it’s developing video fingerprint technology to combat copyright infringement

August 1, 2007

News: On Friday, Viacom and YouTube/Google had a scheduling conference in the Southern District of New York. The biggest news from the hearing was word from YouTube/Google’s lead counsel Philip S. Beck of Barlit Beck Herman Palenchar & Scott LLP about the video fingerprinting technology under works. YouTube already uses AudioMagic’s audio fingerprinting technology to help identify copied audio files. YouTube is developing similar kind of technology to recognize video file fingerprinting, with anticipated deployment around September.

“Somebody who has a copyrighted video … would provide it to us and say ‘we don’t want this up on YouTube.’ We’re developing a way to take basically an electronic or video or digital fingerprint of this material so that if somebody does try to upload it, within a minute or so the computers will figure out that that’s one of the items that the copyright owner said they don’t want up on the system, and we would be able to pull that down until any issues are resolved,” Beck said. (More here)

Analysis: It will be interesting to see what the Google guys cook up. People should be realistic, though, and not expect a foolproof system that will stop all copyright infringement. The open architecture of the Internet makes that virutally impossible.

Will skipping YouTube debate hurt Romney + Giuliani, and Republicans in ’08?

August 1, 2007

News: The backlash appears already in full force, as both Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney decided — for “scheduling” and “snowman” reasons — to skip the scheduled YouTube debate co-sponsored by the Republican party of Florida. (More from Wash Post) The debate, planned for September, has been scrapped for now, given the no-shows by the 2 leading Republicans. The blog world has been abuzz with how this will hurt their campaigns.

Analysis: My guess, and hope, is that it will all be worked out at a different time. If Giuliani and Romney don’t join, that will only look bad for them.  If someone like Fred Thompson joined by then for a rescheduled debate, those two would have no choice but to be a part of the debate.