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Old November 23rd, 2006, 12:14 PM   #1
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The Suits are coming, Film Maker Sues Google!

This is going to get really interesting.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/macworld/200...lmsuit20061127
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Old November 23rd, 2006, 01:26 PM   #2
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What an idiot. Google Video simply hosts whatever people upload to it. Google itself does nothing. If you file a complaint, they will remove infringing content.
Quote:
On November 7, Google Chief Executive Eric Schmidt denied
that his company had set aside $500 million to settle copyright
claims by media companies as part of its deal to acquire
YouTube.
Good luck to him...
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Old November 23rd, 2006, 01:47 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Emre Safak
What an idiot. Google Video simply hosts whatever people upload to it. Google itself does nothing. If you file a complaint, they will remove infringing content.

Good luck to him...
I guess though, you could have said the same thing about Napster! We'll see where it goes.

Mike
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Old November 23rd, 2006, 01:58 PM   #4
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A friend of mine had a short film that had qualified for the Academy Awards by being exhibited in the requisite number of their qualifying festivals, which was then disqualified because one of those festivals hosted the film on their site (for Academy consideration a film must not have been shown on the internet).

In a situation like the one in this thread, a clip that was put up without the filmmaker's consent could have potentially damaging results of this type that are not immediately obvious, and a simple cease-and-desist would not resolve the precedent that had been established.
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Old November 23rd, 2006, 03:24 PM   #5
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Charles points out just one of the elements that a lot of people don't know or care about. Paul Tauger, our resident IP attorney often chimes in at this point to offer professional legal point of view.

I happen to be married to an IP attorney, so I'm privy to a lot of the legal aspects that the average person, let alone average filmmaker gets to see or hear about.

Defending your copyright or trademark is an important part of defending your 'property'. IF you don't 'defend' it(That is to say, file suit to protect it) then it can fall into the public domain... and you lose the right to it. Defending your copyright is good not only for YOUR property, it's good for other 'property owners'.

People who complain about lawsuits filed to protect IP, would probably be the first to sue if someone 'commandeered' their front lawn, or cut a path through their yard without permission, simply because it was 'convenient and easy to do'.

I'm watching with interest how the law will develop with the advent of YouTube, Myspace, Google etc. And develop it will.
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Old November 23rd, 2006, 03:55 PM   #6
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Richard is correct there. There are some things that need to be done in order to keep your work protected and keep YOU in control over it.

Having said that, my main concern is that good did in fact do nothing. A simple angry letter or complaint would never have worked. The implications of your film now being avaliable via the internet's largest cross roads is already damaging. And yes, it is very true that a film placed on the internet denies you any form of nominations into the Academy awards.

A lot of film festivals are also quite strict on where people show thier films. Last I checked, Sony Tropfest will give your film the boot if it was shows somewhere else. Imagine someone posted your film up in Google, and then you got the boot for it. Its Googles responsibility to respect IP.

I like this analogy better. You set up a homeless shelter, then somone comes in and starts directing people who have money to get free food from the shelter. Its moraly wrong.
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Old November 24th, 2006, 01:03 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leo Pepingco
I like this analogy better. You set up a homeless shelter, then somone comes in and starts directing people who have money to get free food from the shelter. Its moraly wrong.
Today's world is one in which restaurants are afraid to give leftover food to the homeless for fear of being sued if someone gets sick. And while copyrights and IP deserve to be protected up to a point, that can be carried to extremes in which the penalty for posting something on the internet might be more severe than the penalty for manslaughter. There needs to be a sense of balance here which is currently tilting toward excessive restrictions around copyrights and away from common sense.
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Old November 24th, 2006, 08:46 AM   #8
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Today's world is also one in which a person can invest incredible time money and effort into a product, and have it 'stolen' and spread around the globe in less than twenty four hours by people who don't think it's a 'big deal'... or think it cool to be a 'rengade'.

Research the 'broken window' effect. That's essentially what's happening right now to the IP world. "Hey, it's only a song... a movie... it's not like I'm hurting people..." If you don't fix the windows, or paint out the graffitti IMMEDIATELY in a neighborhood... serious crimes move in exponentially. That's what the prosecution for infringement is about. That's one reason why the cost is so high... because so few people ARE caught.

Let me ask you this. IF you put a lot of work into whatever you produce, a wedding video, or short film say. ANd then saw your work on someone else's website, saying it belonged to them, and they were making money from your labor... you'd be okay with that... right?
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Old November 24th, 2006, 08:50 AM   #9
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Very good points...watch out for your property. I allowed a friend to put a short up online on another website, but she asked me first (she was in the film). If I did a search and found my films online without my consent, I'd research who did it first, then figure out if it's damaging or not.

And if they were charging for it, I would have some major issues with that.

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Old November 24th, 2006, 02:09 PM   #10
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We all know that their was bound to be companies suing Google but this is not the end of a company that has a market value of about 100 to 130 billion dollars. 1 million dollars should be a fair amount of money that Google should give to the Producer of the documentary. On Amazon the documentary is selling for 14.99 and because it’s of a higher quality, I know people are still buying it. You also have the same chances of the DVD being copied as the file that is already on the internet.

Google decision to buy YouTube wasn’t as bad as some may make it out to be. It’s like Sony adding Blu-Ray to the PS3. Blu-Ray was having a slow death before the PS3 came out and Sony knew that they were going to loose a lot of money if they included Blu-Ray. Google Video was never getting as much traffic as MySpace and Google knew that if Rupert Murdoch bought YouTube, their Video service would have died a slow death because theirs no possible way Google would catch up to a combination of MySpace and YouTube or you can just call it MyYouTubeSpace.
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Old November 24th, 2006, 05:00 PM   #11
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One small thing, Sony's PS3 always intended to have a Blu-Ray player and a Blu-Ray player only came out 3-5 months ago. Not sure how you can say it was dying a slow death, but it's been out. And Toshiba loses around $200 or so on every HD DVD player they sell, as of right now.

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Old November 24th, 2006, 07:14 PM   #12
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Of course Sony would make Blu-ray the heart of the PS3, no question there. As to which format will win in the HD DVD arena, if either, that is still a matter for the future to see.

Both formats provide substantial improvement over the current DVD format, and at this point, no one knows which will end up winning. Sony's format has more volume and a few more bells and whistles, but Toshiba’s is much cheaper and easier to get going, or implemented.

The big thing I see, is what is going to follow? I don't see either of these formats surviving more than a year or so, before something better is introduced. Maybe in the long run, the easy introduction required of the Toshiba format will be the best. Anyone remember Beta?

I, we, everyone I know wants a format that will handle the higher capacity needed for HD delivery, but they also want one that will not require hardware change every 6 months to a year. This we and the consumers simply can't afford. If this happens, both formats will "Die a Slow Death!"

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Old November 26th, 2006, 05:17 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard Alvarez
Let me ask you this. IF you put a lot of work into whatever you produce, a wedding video, or short film say. ANd then saw your work on someone else's website, saying it belonged to them, and they were making money from your labor... you'd be okay with that... right?
No, of course not. I just think we need to be careful about how we interpret and enforce IP laws, so we don't end up with more nonsense like people getting sued for singing "Happy Birthday," or corporations getting copyrights extended for unreasonable durations.

As far as the 'broken window' effect is concerned, that's a useful concern...but imagine what life would be like if every law on the books was strictly enforced. Do you always drive under the posted speed limit?
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Old November 26th, 2006, 05:29 PM   #14
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I disagree with your argument, Kevin. If someone was making money off of something I poured my own money into, someone who did so illegally, I'd sue, as well. I'm not rich, I'm not a multi-national, horizontally- or vertically-intergrated company, I'm just an indie filmmaker trying to make films and earn a living. If someone takes that away from me illegally, I'll go after them.

And I hope to extend my copyrights for as long as I, or my estate, is around.

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Old November 26th, 2006, 05:31 PM   #15
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My example was probably misinterpreted. A lot of people are saying that the worst choice that Sony have ever made was to include Blu-Ray into the PS3 just like people are saying that Google worst decision they ever made was to buy YouTube. I understand Sony was already going to use Blu-Ray in the PS3 no matter what just like Google originally intended to buy YouTube for a long time now.

I hope Google finds out who is the original uploader of that documentary because most of the blame should go to that individual. Google and YouTube are both very good video sources to have online and some people need to realize that abusing both services by uploading other people’s work can damage the services and people always complain why companies like Apple, Google and Sony spend a lot of money developing copy protection schemes such as DRMs, HDCP, AACS etc.

I was talking to a Google representative months ago about the reasons that they cannot allow just anybody to upload and charge for their programs and the main concern is that people may upload other people work and make money from it, for example someone can charge for work that’s not theirs and Google pays the crook 70% while Google gets 30%. Since Google is working as a distributor and making a lot of money that way, they can be sued even more. Once they have all of their problems solved, they will allow any independent Producer to make money using Google’s video service and they hope to do that by the end of next year if not earlier.

A friend of mine is already selling one of his TV shows on Google and although he probably only made about several dollars the potential is very big because lest say you make a documentary that Google has exclusive rights to distribute and you charge 20 dollars for each download. Not including taxes you will get 14 dollars for each download and if 100,000 people bought it the Producer will receive 1.4 million dollars from Google. Now if 1 million people bought the file, that would equal 14 million dollars for the producer. The sky’s the limit as long as your documentary is perfectly made.
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