YouTube suspends the account of PS22 chorus — why?

News: I am sad to report that YouTube has suspended the account of PS22 chorus, the wonderful bunch of 5th graders from PS22 who inspired Tori Amos, Stevie Nicks, and other singers with their amazing renditions of the musicians’ own songs. The kids’ videos generated over 7 million views, and got the kids on Nightline, Good Morning America, and other national TV shows. Here is the link to the blog post from the teacher and music director Gregg Breinberg.

Analysis: Unbelievable. Is this suspension at YouTube’s own initiative? Or did one of the copyright holders complain? Usually, you can see a claim of copyright asserted, with the copyright holder’s name, for removed videos that received DMCA notices on YouTube. The teacher says that, being very “diplomatic” about the ordeal, the YouTube suspension was all a “mistake” by YouTube, but all of the old videos are lost (with their 7 million views count). The teacher is starting another YouTube channel. In any event, this is very sad. How can children learning how to sing well be a “terms of use” violation, YouTube?

UPDATE: SchoolTube, a different site for schools, has all of the videos — click here. Also, the teacher has started a new YouTube channel – click here. Here’s my favorite song, Landslide, the second one performed in front of Stevie Nicks:

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4 Responses to YouTube suspends the account of PS22 chorus — why?

  1. Ryan says:

    Youtube is becoming more and more militant with regard to copyright infringement, and not many people working there do any sort of fair use analysis before taking something down that may or may not infringe. This type ‘disappearing video’ thing happens often now.

    I don’t know if you’re familiar with their new automated “Content ID Match” system, but it automatically disables the audio of any video that has a part of a song that matches a copyrighted work. In other words, there is no fair use (or parody) of any portion of any copyrighted song allowed for any purpose. If you want to dispute it, you have to fill out a form and do the whole 4 (or 5)-factor fair use analysis and hope the copyright holder agrees with you, because Youtube doesn’t appear to want to make an independent determination for fear of upsetting the people with lawyers on retainer.

    Copyright law and the Internet are at war with each other right now because the copyright holders with deep pockets have a massive bargaining advantage in enforcing whatever perceived rights they may have, and there’s little incentive for companies fearful of litigation to stand up for individual users.

  2. cica144@girlsandnylons says:

    OK, I will dispute it me have to fill out a form and do the whole 4 or 5 factor fair use analysis and hope the copyright holder agrees with me because Youtube doesn’t appear to want to make an independent determination for fear of upsetting the people with lawyers on retainer.

  3. I just had the same thing happen to me last week and re-built a new account. I lost of views and credibility because my videos were appearing in search results as a video result and now, when clicked on it just says disabled due to terms and condition violation. So my would-be customer is lost. My new remote control mower videos are slowly-but-surley regaining authority in the video results listings and by the time they have re-established themselves, it will be in the middle of winter when no one buys lawn mowers, even if it is remote controlled. I would be honored to help you get your class’s videos back on track and better than before by shareing what I have learned while promoting my remote control mowers.

  4. […] channel of PS22 chorus News: The saga continues, apparently with a happy ending. I’ve already chronicled here how, earlier this summer, YouTube terminated for “terms of use” violation the account of […]

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