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YouTube Removed 30,000 Japanese Videos from Site 265

Grooves writes "YouTube has been asked to remove almost 30,000 videos from their site, according to reports. The Japan Society for Rights of Authors, Composers and Publishers (JASRAC) found 29,549 videos on the site that had materials contained in them that where not authorized by rights holders. From the article, 'A spokesperson for that organization said that they were considering petitioning YouTube for a better screening process. Although YouTube is legally obligated to remove infringing material when notified, some copyright holders have expressed irritation at the notion that they need to police YouTube themselves.' Now that Google's is attached to the site, will events like this become more commonplace?"
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YouTube Removed 30,000 Japanese Videos from Site

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  • Wow. (Score:5, Funny)

    by MBCook ( 132727 ) <> on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:55AM (#16516231) Homepage
    That must be like 5% of the Naruto videos up there.
  • by purpledinoz ( 573045 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:55AM (#16516239)
    That's really unfortunate. Some of those Japanese shows are hilarious, and watching videos from foreign shows is a great glimpse into another culture.
    • by s20451 ( 410424 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:58AM (#16516289) Journal
      watching videos from foreign shows is a great glimpse into another culture

      Yes. Laughing at the weird customs of foreigners brings us together as a human family.
      • by smclean ( 521851 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:09AM (#16516447) Homepage
        Yeah, how dare that guy say he likes funny TV shows and exploring other cultures. What a racist, you give it to him, man.
      • by Destoo ( 530123 ) <> on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:44AM (#16516983) Homepage Journal
        Are you fucking serious? We're not talking about "weird customs" here. []

        Japanese game show - the goal: To make it through a tongue twister without screwing up. The penalty: A swift wack to the groin with the slap-o-matic 2000.

        Seriously.. Comedy gold.
        • Under that pressure I probably couldn't even beat World 1-1 in Super Mario Bros.

          Maybe Gamespot's Button Mashing needs a Japanese overhaul. I'd like to see someone beat two enemies from TMNT2 when their groin is on the line.
        • by Chagatai ( 524580 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @12:55PM (#16517927) Homepage
          Slightly OT, I know, but I just had to share. While in Japan for my honeymoon, I was often up at odd hours while my wife was sleeping because of the time change. I turned onto one comedy show that seemed like a cross between Jackass and MAD TV. They had a segment called, "No Reaction Theatre," where people had to continue acting while various distractions tried to draw their attention. In this case, people above them on the scaffolding would drop large aluminum foil cookpans onto their heads. It didn't hurt so much as cause a loud noise and throw them off. So they would be in the middle of this soap-opera-esque moment lamenting why someone died, with tears in their eyes, looking up, and then WHAM! Baking pan in the face! The show culminated with about 100 pans being dropped onto a group funeral scene over and over again.

          They are geniuses. American TV could learn something from them.

      • by Technician ( 215283 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @06:59PM (#16523175)
        Yes. Laughing at the weird customs of foreigners brings us together as a human family.

        What I miss is the magician. In the USA, the bigger and flashier the better. In Japan the smaller close-up but seemingly impossible magic is what I found interesting. Anyone else amazed at the glass trick where a salt shaker is passed up through a glass top table? How about tossing a playing card inside a fishtank, then reaching through the tank back glass to fetch the card? Another street magic trick is the one where he tapes a piece of paper onto a shop front window, then goes inside the shop, then comes out by tearing a hole through the paper and climbing through, then removing the paper showing an intact glass window. Wow. That leaves a lot of the US flashy magic tricks looking pretty pale.

        I'm going to miss the magic shows.

        By the way, anybody know how he did that?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by djupedal ( 584558 )
      "That's really unfortunate. Some of those Japanese shows are hilarious, and watching videos from foreign shows is a great glimpse into another culture."

      I know I can't get enough of watching some guy try to escape a lit bottle-rocket sticking out of his ass...
    • by mnmn ( 145599 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:30AM (#16516741) Homepage
      In other news Google is selling Youtube for $10,000 on eBay.

      Lets hope their purchase wasnt a mistake and we keep getting cool videos out of it.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by kabocox ( 199019 )
      That's really unfortunate. Some of those Japanese shows are hilarious, and watching videos from foreign shows is a great glimpse into another culture.

      Maybe that's why they want them removed. Could it be a secret plot by the Japanese to export only anime, but keep all the really good live action Japanese cultural related shows to themselves? It could also be that the Japanese don't mind acting fools infront of other Japanese, but by damned if they'll act a fool where non-Japanese will see it.
    • by Simonetta ( 207550 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @05:17PM (#16521777)
      Seriously, Television and video are the best look into another culture possible. The argument that posting Japanese television video is a violation of so-called intellectual property is completely negated by the value of having a window into Japan available to the rest of the world.

          The one thing that the so-called intellectual property 'owners' don't understand is that the only thing worse than having someone view your video without paying is to have no one interested in viewing your video at all. And every step that they take to close off access to public viewing of their video products sends the public into other directions for interesting videos. Directions that are not under the control of the video or music industries and directions that are unable to generate profits for the video and music industries.

          That is the whole point of the YouTube phenomenon. Young people are very interested in seeing videos that are outside of the control of the global media giants. And interested in not paying money for the experience. Any normal person could figure this out, but media executives and lawyers are not normal people. Their brains work differently.

          In other words, the media industry needs to learn that removing your products from the new general media outlets seriously decreases long-term demand for your products. And a serious decrease in demand means for them a serious decrease in the advertising revenue stream.

          One would think that they would have learned this lesson from the demise of network television over the past twenty years. But again, their brains just don't work like ordinary brains do.

          The global media companies will be gone in twenty years, Good riddance!
  • by killa62 ( 828317 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:55AM (#16516243)
    Please move along.
  • by daeg ( 828071 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:56AM (#16516261)
    Seriously. Did anyone, including Google, not see this coming?
    • by adam ( 1231 ) * on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:36AM (#16516841)
      Google is not managed by idiots. If they are going to shell out $1.6B for a commodity (even it's only $1.6B in stock and not cold, hard, cash), you can bet there was some due diligence involved. If you look at similar previous businesses-- Napster is the best that comes to mind.. Napster raked in a bunch of VC cash for Sean Fanning, and then it went down the tubes, but this was mostly as a result of failing to forsee the legal problems they would encouter. Google, no doubt, has already forseen this, and probably has developed a very robust (and hopefully flexible.. since web 2.0 is in its infancy) business model. One major difference between YouTube and Napster is that Napster was virtually 100% copyrighted (pirated) content. YouTube is probably 50% pirated content, with the other 50% being unique content (vlogs, etc) from users more interested in social networking, and I suspect in some ways these are more "valuable" users to google (in that they surf more often, are more susceptible/amenable to ads, etc). Of the pirated content, I suspect around 25-50% of the rights-owners actually "care enough" to pursue the fact that it is being exhibited on the web without royalties to them. The remainer are cellphone camera bootlegs of concerts, people singing covers of their favorite songs, etc.

      After about 30 seconds of brainstorming, I can imagine google will focus on the social networking users (I already see YouTube making huge headway against MySpace-- watching a video of someone on their profile gives LOADS more parsable clues about them than a few blurry "MySpace Angles" photos), and secondarily attempt to convince many copyright holders to PROMOTE their retail content on YouTube rather than just ask them to cease and desist. This promotion could come in the way of YouTube "premier access" videos or site area, driven by g-checkout (or whatever its name is), where users pay for individual access to videos (at $.05 a view for a 2 minute video? maybe..) or perhaps for a site-wide access on a monthly fee basis. Or this promotion could come in the way of simply trying to pursuade copyright holders to let heir heavily compressed 320x240 webvideo stay up, with blatant text links/banners to the official site or whatever. As someone who actually creates commercial video content (I make documentaries, but have directed other projects such as music videos, etc), this is a situation I am amenable to. I'd be fine with google showing excepts of my last couple of films (extreme sports stuff), with context links on the page to buy the DVD, or maybe to "jamster" type ringtone sites that sell my video ringtones (which I don't actually have, but funny story, a large distributor [rhymes with Barner Wrothers] approached us to distribute our latest film, and one of their executive's biggest sales pitches to us [this was around a yr ago] was doing video ringtones-- "they're going to be huge!"). Also, remember, even if YouTube can't turn a profit on its own, the data-mining possibilities are endess... let's say I use my YouTube account (i am logged in via cookie) to watch lots of Morrissey videos. Then I google search for "documentary." There is [hypothetically] a new documentary coming out about Morrissey's legal battles with former Smiths bandmates, and now google can serve me context ad content based on the context of not just what I searched for, but what google also know me to enjoy. The correlations that can be made by cross referencing this content are pretty friggin extensive. I am positive this hasn't escaped their attention.

      So in short, yes, everyone (including the big G) saw this coming. Expect some cool adaptations soon, I do hope.

      Sidenote: I think that there is probably an amazing documentary to be made about the goings-on inside google.. what it means to work on the campus, how google employees are treated differently than typical IT employees, how they foster innovation, how they continue to push the envelope of how to do business on the web, their expansion into china (and grappling wi
  • Noooooo!!! (Score:5, Funny)

    by Rob T Firefly ( 844560 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:57AM (#16516273) Homepage Journal
    How will the world get its homemade music videos that make anime characters look like they're swooning to Evanescence or singing Rammstein, now?
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by British ( 51765 )
      Heh. If any of the 30K videos removed were AMVs, YouTube is doing the public a favor. In YouTube's early months(long before the buyout), ANY search brought up Anime crap, probably being AMVs. It polluted their search engine. Putting a song to some anime footage brings nothing original to the table.
  • I don't get it. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tygerstripes ( 832644 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:57AM (#16516277)
    they were considering petitioning YouTube for a better screening process.
    By "better process", do you mean, I dunno, having one?
    • Re:I don't get it. (Score:5, Informative)

      by Salvance ( 1014001 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:05AM (#16516373) Homepage Journal
      Many music and video publishers are calling on Youtube, Google, Myspace, etc. to start screening using automated audio/video "fingerprinting" technologies. Here's a recent news article on a pirated music recognition offering [] that would really hurt Gootube in the short term. In the long term, I'd like to think that such anti-piracy measures would make submitted videos more original and interesting, but maybe I'm being naive.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Is this anything like the Haars Tranform mapping thing mentioned in an earlier article []? I can't tell from the linked article.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Traa ( 158207 )
        Gootube? You mean Yougle! Has a neat ring to it :-)
        /me checks if that domain name is available
      • >I'd like to think that such anti-piracy measures would make submitted videos more original and interesting, but maybe I'm being naive.

        Maybe. I would think that there's would be a lot more incentive for people to upload original and creative stuff (look at how Flash has democratized simple games and animation). Instead because of lax filtering of all this copyrighted materials there's much more of a demand of AMV and Will and Grace episodes. People with original stuff dont even get noticed outside of th
    • Re:I don't get it. (Score:5, Informative)

      by truthsearch ( 249536 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:16AM (#16516561) Homepage Journal
      According to their copyright policy [] they place the burden squarely on the uploaders. I'm sure it's for legal reasons. If they claim to screen all content they may become liable for any content that gets through. But they should at least attempt a more rigorous screening process than just waiting for random people to flag it.
      • the *AAs want to eat their cake and save it, too.
        Today they have the following options:
        1. Gootube lays the burden of checking copyright in the uploaders, remove upon request from the holders.
        2. Gootube lays the burden of checking copyright in the holders (eg, automagically via fingerprinting), considers anything else fair game.

        The *AAs want Gootube to check (via fingerprint), check again (when asked to), and assume responsibility if something (that the *AAs provided) goes wrong.
      • Re:I don't get it. (Score:5, Interesting)

        by TubeSteak ( 669689 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:47AM (#16517039) Journal
        I think the issue is more along the lines of "Does YouTube have an obligation to pre-screen videos?"

        AFAIK, YouTube's only legal obligation is to remove copyrighted materials when notified. Copyright was was written with the notiont that "it's your copyright, you protect it."

        "If they claim to pre-screen any content they may become liable for all content that gets through."
        I switched "any" and "all".
        Isn't that how the system works?
        • Well, that's how the system is supposed to work. But we all know how well the system is functioning these days.
          • No, that is not how it is supposed to work. Well before 'these days' US courts defined concepts like vicarious copyright infringement and contributory copyright infringement.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by jfengel ( 409917 )
          IANAL, but I suspect that if somebody can make a charge of encouraging copyright infringement stick, then they'll be liable. A lawyer could claim that they should reasonably have known that a significant amount of illegal activity (copyright infringement) was being done through their site, in which they were a considerably active participant.

          Google, of course, will claim it's all just bits and that they remove stuff when notified, but if the lawyers can convince the courts that they should have known better
      • Furthermore, based on my understanding of the DMCA, provided that they respond to takedown orders, I think they're protected in doing this, as operators of an Information Service (or whatever the term is in the DMCA for networked services).

        As long as they respond to takedown requests and have an address on file with the Copyright Office for those requests, then I think they're pretty safe in doing what they're doing.

        Everybody here on Slashdot has been predicting the death of Google by way of YouTube lawsuit
    • by Anonymous Coward
      to look after someone else's copyrighted works?
  • Why is this news? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by fernandoh26 ( 963204 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:58AM (#16516283) Homepage
    Why is this news? YouTube says if you notice a video that is hosted without permission of copyright holders to let them know and they will remove it, and this is just one japanese corporation using that policy?

    Tonight @ 11: My bank stops sending me paper statements upon my request! SHOCKING!
  • by mekkab ( 133181 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:59AM (#16516303) Homepage Journal
    Now I'll actually have to buy their albums!
  • by jakoz ( 696484 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:00AM (#16516311)
    Can anyone really be surprised?

    Suddenly YouTube is worth a bundle of cash. We all knew it would happen.

    All in all, I'd say this is a very gentle way of saying to the **AA that we're going to try to do the right thing.

    On second thoughts, they already would have said that in private discussions, behind closed doors.

    This is the way to prepare the rest of us. Then it won't seem so bad when they come down like a ton of bricks on the US infringements. It won't hurt their market so much.
  • police (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bazorg ( 911295 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:01AM (#16516319) Homepage
    some copyright holders have expressed irritation at the notion that they need to police YouTube themselves

    And exactly whose job should that be?

    • Re:police (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Brave Guy ( 457657 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:32AM (#16516767)

      Traditionally, the government's executive branch is responsible for catching law-breakers, and the judiciary for dealing with them.

      On the flip side, copyright infringement is traditionally a civil matter. Recent legislation in some jurisdictions has changed this. Perhaps this fairly recognises that the speed any damage is done today will be vastly faster than the speed of any protracted civil court proceedings, or perhaps it's because of lobbying from Big Media who want to reduce their overheads; take your pick.

      I'm not completely decided on this one, but you can certainly understand content providers feeling that the government should act against organisations who, let's be fair, basically run a business model predicated on ripping off those content providers in violation of the law.

      • Content providers do not simply feel the government should act against the organizations you describe, it is a matter of legal precedent. This issue was dealt with by the courts long before the internet allowed people to share copyrighted content.
  • Get Over It. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Daniel_Staal ( 609844 ) <> on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:04AM (#16516355)
    Although YouTube is legally obligated to remove infringing material when notified, some copyright holders have expressed irritation at the notion that they need to police YouTube themselves.

    As opposed to the print world, or the spoken world, where... They need to find and notify the authorities of copyright infringement.

    I understand the feeling that 'I shouldn't need to do this' that brings up that statement. But it has always been the copyright holder's problem to identify infractions. YouTube is no different in that regard, besides that it brings a lot of creations together in one place.

    • Re:Get Over It. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by CmdrGravy ( 645153 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:15AM (#16516547) Homepage
      Exactly, how is YouTube supposed to know that any particular video being uploaded contains copyright infringements ? Even if they had someone visually checking each video that person cannot be expected to know of and recognise every single copyrighted piece of work in the world which may be incorporated into an uploaded video.

      The only people who absolutely know that a video contains copyrighted materials are the copyright owners and in this case they have made the identification, YouTube have removed the content and the world is as it should be.

      The company involved can complain as much as they like that their copyrighted material should not be distributed in this manner but there is simply no sensible way in which the system can work other than the way it does. Perhaps if you could "fingerprint" every millisecond of video with a unique identifier which could be checked against a copyright database then that would change but I don't think there is any such system in place today.
      • Re:Get Over It. (Score:5, Insightful)

        by radish ( 98371 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:32AM (#16516775) Homepage
        All videos contain copyrighted information, as everything anyone creates is automatically copyrighted. The question is not "is this copyrighted" but "do the copyright holders give their permission for this to be posted" - which is, unfortunatly, even harder to answer.
      • So, you're saying there's no way to do this in its current form without flouting the law? Perhaps they should have thought of that before spending zillions on the idea?

        • No, I'm not saying that at all. Whoever posted the video should certainly have checked so far as they are able that they haven't violated anyones copyright before uploading videos to YouTube. YouTube are under no obligation to check the copyright of every video uploaded to them but they do have to remove any videos which they are informed are in breach of copyright restrictions. This is exactly what they do do without flouting any laws.
      • The only people who absolutely know that a video contains copyrighted materials are the copyright owners and in this case they have made the identification, YouTube have removed the content and the world is as it should be.

        Not to mention if the copyright owners have or have not released their works to public domain.
    • Can you really not see any practical difference between the print world, where each separate infringement by an individual typically requires a significant time and materials overhead, and the on-line world, where mass infringement by thousands of individuals using sites like YouTube is near-free and near-instantaneous? Do you really believe that these have the same potential for damaging an injured party, and at the same speed, and thus merit the same response to uphold the spirit of the law?

  • by Speare ( 84249 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:04AM (#16516357) Homepage Journal

    The power of copyright does not include forcing an obligation onto governments or common carriers to search or police the content. The power of copyright gives the owner a right to take down specific infringing works.

    Every scribble, photo, sculpted shape or soundbite you create is copyrighted as soon as you create it. This goes for everybody within the copyright-abiding hemisphere, which obviously means that the number of copyrighted works outnumbers the population by a very large factor. Clearly, not all rights-holders are trying to enforce those rights against every transgression, thankfully. Grouse all you want, but if you own a copyright, you are the only party who should be obligated to do anything about it.

    Some carriers might impose a licensing check before submissions can be completed, or they might impose occasional purges like this even without the copyright owners having to complain, but the vast majority of carriers do not (and should not) impose any such hurdle to allowing their users to publish. This is the central promise of public broadcasting and collaboration by network.

    If every sheet of paper needed permission before it could hold an idea in ink, we would still be scratching words in the dirt and looking over our shoulders.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by stubear ( 130454 )
      "If every sheet of paper needed permission before it could hold an idea in ink,..."

      Copyright does not, never had, nor ever will, protect ideas. It protects the expression of ieas in a fixed medium. perdiod, full stop, end of story. Ideas cannot be locked up with copyrights, that would be the world of patents, two doors down on the left.
      • by Speare ( 84249 )
        Firstly, I'm quite clear on the difference. The key words you chose to ignore are 'paper', 'hold' and 'ink'. The tangible expression of the idea *can* be locked up by copyright. Secondly, patents also have the same obligation on the owner to identify infringements: to give a similar dirt-age analogy, if you had to find out who pushed a round rock first before pushing a round rock yourself, we still would not have the wheel.
    • by Wylfing ( 144940 )

      Well said. If a technology is implemented that by default prohibits the use of all copyrighted works until permission can be secured, with remote (and possibly retroactive) revocation, I think the movie studios and record companies are going to be in for a very, very rude awakening (as well as most of the business world). Business "steals" (sic) copyrighted material all the time. It's a very normal thing to do. But if they want to clamp down on our taking, I think we should clamp down on their taking as wel

  • Yatta? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ericlondaits ( 32714 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:04AM (#16516359) Homepage
    Will this mean the dissapearance of the Yatta [] video? What about Matrix Ping Pong? [].

    I can do without all the JPop though...
  • by Speare ( 84249 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:08AM (#16516427) Homepage Journal

    Given the low-pass signature identification algorithms we have discussed lately, I would really like to see a duplicate-video cull on these sites. There seems to be fifty copies of each of the more popular clips, cloned and re-posted to and youtube in some kind of karma-whoring frenzy.

    I bet there are more than 30,000 dupes if you just count the 3,000 top-rated video clips.

    • There seems to be fifty copies of each of the more popular clips, cloned and re-posted to and youtube in some kind of karma-whoring frenzy.
      If the files are exact dupes, a simple md5 hash check would resolve the issue & wouldn't be overly CPU intensive (which could be a big deal for the quantity of video YouTube has)

      Rapid Share was doing that a while ago, to prevent the re-uploading of banned material.
  • by zdzichu ( 100333 ) <zdzichu AT irc DOT pl> on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:10AM (#16516457) Homepage Journal
    I'm not suprised. I seen too many clips from weird japanese tv-shows on Internet. People making idiots from themselves, running naked, shooting sperm, diving in hot water to watch boobs.... Based on those videos, image of japanese people is clear: they are lunatics, they are insane, their society is really fucked up.

    So Japanese took the first step to correcting (hiding?) this public image of them.
    • by Xemu ( 50595 )
      running naked, shooting sperm, diving in hot water to watch boobs.... Based on those videos, image of japanese people is clear: they are lunatics,

      Lunatics? Who's the lunatic here? It sounds to me like the japanese are on eternal spring break and knows how to have a really good time!!

  • They looked... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by doit3d ( 936293 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:13AM (#16516509)
    ...the gift horse in the mouth then kicked it squarely in the balls just like the *AA's have been doing for years. They have just kicked the best free advertisement they could have had to the curb. Granted, the material may be copyrighted, but the quality is extremely poor. The material is seen by persons who then sometimes seek out and want to purchase higher quality videos/music to support various forums of artistic expression. Nice way to shut out customers that they could have gotten for free. I guess they must be preparing to earn their money through lawsuits rather than through a legitimate business transaction which wins over customers. Money seems to be one helluva drug, seeing how it blinds upper corporate echelon.
  • is because a lot of authorities weren't aware of YouTube [], but when Google bought them and it was front page news, suddenly everyone's logging on the (wrong) website, realising that (they're on the wrong site) there's copyrighted material on there and requesting it to be removed.

    Slipped a nice little joke in there for everyone to enjoy too.
  • by GogglesPisano ( 199483 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:15AM (#16516543)
    some copyright holders have expressed irritation at the notion that they need to police YouTube themselves
    Yeah, that's tough. I mean, corporate copyright holders have spent millions buying politicians to protect their cash streams with the full force of the federal government for 120 years. Clearly it's unreasonable to expect them to stop counting their money and actually expend some effort on their own behalf. Everyone else should be doing it for them!
    • And would you apply the same standards to the countless small, specialist outfits, which produce much of the best video material out there, yet which are threatened with quite literally going under because of sites like this ripping their stuff? This type of organisation couldn't afford a lobbyist in their wildest dreams, never mind having anything to do with getting copyright law changed.

      It's really very annoying when people equate "copyright law" with "abuse of power by multinational corporations". The

      • by GogglesPisano ( 199483 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @12:10PM (#16517403)
        Yes, I would - if only for lack of imagination.

        The "small, specialist outfits" are precisely the ones who could benefit most from the huge, free exposure that a YouTube provides - they should be embracing this opportunity. Instead, however, they band together (as the JASRAC group in the TFA) and use the same jackboot tactics as their big corporate brethren.

        The draconion copyright statutes instituted by the megacorps certainly aren't there to help the little guys - they're there to maintain the status quo. The small outfits should be clamoring for new advertising and distribution channels like YouTube and P2P, but they're not. In their silence they are complicit with the RIAA and MPAA thugs.
        • The "small, specialist outfits" are precisely the ones who could benefit most from the huge, free exposure that a YouTube provides - they should be embracing this opportunity.

          I'm sorry, but your logic escapes me. How does having your entire video/DVD catalogue available on someone else's web site help anyone except that someone else? This isn't promotion, or marketing. I've seen both sides of this in some cases, and posted about it before. The short version is: loads of people just look it up on-line an

  • I don't understand (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jackharrer ( 972403 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:15AM (#16516545)
    As always they want to remove everything instead of thinking first. What kind of quality does YouTube have? Sh*t, everybody knows. Those videos should be classified as promotional material. Instead removing them, they should lower the resolution (as if there's need for it already) and audio quality (look previous brackets) and add some intro like 'If you want to see it in proper way - Buy It!'. That would be much better than removing it.

    Best part is that this process can be easily automated so videos marked as copyrighted by MPIA or similar can be automatically 'copyright marked'. That would create a lot of revenue for artists and a lot of fun for ordinary people.

    Shame that they cannot think in this way. Create - not destroy!
  • by N8F8 ( 4562 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:18AM (#16516577)
    Adult Swim aside, without exposure like this there is little chance of American folks becoming fans. Heck, I've been using YouTube for the last few days to help buy Anime (check for popularity and samples) for my kids and myself for Christmas. Bad move.
    • by stubear ( 130454 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:46AM (#16517021)
      Exposure is one thing, posting entire seeeasons of episodes from TV shows is something entirely different. If this were simply a quesiton of exposure then why not put up one or two espisodes or the first 5-10 minutes of each episode with some information on when and where to watch the show? Posting copyrighted material online without consent is not about exposure or fighting the man, it's about getting shit for free, period.
  • What percentage of YouTube's hosted content does this represent?
  • by thenetbox ( 809459 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:39AM (#16516891)
    Youtube was the easiest to use source of non-dubbed sub-titled anime. Why can't Cartoon network just sub-title their anime shows instead of dubbing the crap out of them.

    The voice actors for most dubbed anime aren't very good and you lose a lot of information.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Robaato ( 958471 )
      Are you assuming that the Japanese voice actors are that much better than the American ones?

      Are you also assuming that the professional subtitle scripts are 100% accurate to the original Japanese meaning?

      Furthermore, are you assuming that those subbed anime files on YouTube were translated and subbed by professional translators?

      Remember, with animation, the "original" voice track is also a dub track. Just as there are...less-than-talented American voice actors, so there are less-than-skillful Japanese v
  • by csoto ( 220540 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:45AM (#16516993)
    As a copyright holder, it's YOUR responsibility to defend your rights. Once properly notified, an offender or facilitator (like YouTube) is obligated to take action, but "policing" is the (C) holder's problem.
  • by SCDavis ( 974281 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:52AM (#16517125)
    What do you do all day?

    I work for The Japan Society for Rights of Authors, Composers and Publishers. I brows YouTube all day looking for pron, i mean illegal japanese material that does not belong on YouTube...

    Just imagine their annual review...

    "Good Job Li, you found 3,000 illegal videos on YouTube. Too bad Jin found 5,000 illegal videos. 15 lashings and you need to work more than your normal 60 hours a week!" :)
  • Reasonable. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by MaWeiTao ( 908546 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:56AM (#16517193)
    My first thought when I heard this story was, "What does it matter to them? No one outside of Japan will ever get their programming anyway."

    But then my friend made a very good point. Youtube was sold for $1.6 billion in no small part because they attracted viewers with copyrighted programming. They certainly have made little effort in the past to block that kind of material.

    That friend has been in a similar situation where someone running a site overseas goes and essentially takes his copyrighted flash games and puts them on their site without his permission. They then lure visitors using my friend's, and other people's, creations in order to make money on advertising.

    Why Youtube was ever worth $1.6 billion is beyond me.
  • I mean, a lot of people just watch anime on you tube. Without that the site is a bunch of wining video blogs.
  • by Nananine ( 967931 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @12:03PM (#16517297)
    I headed up a group on Youtube that posted rare videos and live shows of independent Japanese bands. We went unmolested for the most part until the last months, when we were hit with a sweeping ban that affected some of our biggest contributors.

    Some of the bans sort of made sense, as there are some decidedly uncommercial bands on major labels in Japan (sort of a "whoops, totally forgot" situation). Also, there was a major crackdown by Japanese music TV channel Spaceshower TV, which a good many of the videos were recorded off of. Some banned videos, however, puzzled us.

    For example, my offending videos included hand-held recordings of a long-defunct indie band Naht that were taken at the Black Cat club in Washington DC. Naht was one of my favorite bands in college, so I was overjoyed that I was able to find such rare footage and immediately wanted to share it. I'm dissapointed it was removed from youtube.

    I was eventually given a permanent ban, although I hadn't uploaded anything in months. Bad timing, too, because I had switched the group back to "group leader approves videos" because of horrible video spam. It's too bad, too; a great Israeli noise group called Gaop started uploading videos. Not Japanese, but good stuff, so I kept it on.

    I respect and understand my ban, but I'm still dissapointed. Maybe I should start digging around for stuff on the Chinese punk scene, see how youtube censors those.
  • Rights holders? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by denix0 ( 949825 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @12:13PM (#16517429)
    I wonder, did they prove they have rights to those 30,000 videos? Or they just sent a note to GooTube requiring them to remove the videos and GooTube just silently swallowed that?
    • I've posted below the DMCA's requirements. Note in particular that false statements constitute perjury under the DMCA. Realistically, they sent a list of infringing programs (names in English and romanized Japanese, dates of original broadcast, and rights holders), the URLs to any instances they found with language saying "And if you see anything else with that title, its probably ours too", and a signed/stamped* "Me, too!" letter from each participating rights holder. (*Traditionally in Japan contracts
  • by Animats ( 122034 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @12:44PM (#16517817) Homepage

    Of course this happened. YouTube is the next Napster. Same centralized hosting of uploaded content, same business model, same excuses, same legal problems. YouTube is in a worse legal position than Napster. Napster just hosted the index. YouTube hosts the actual content.

    YouTube could well be shut down by an injunction. That's what happened to Napster. "Napster is enjoined from copying or assisting or enabling or contributing to the copy or duplication of all copyrighted songs and musical compositions of which the plaintiffs hold rights." -- U.S. District Judge Marilyn Hall Patel.

    As for it being the responsibility of the copyright holder to find the material, "Napster wrote the software; it's up to them to write software that will remove from users the ability to copy copyrighted material," -- Judge Patel

    YouTube, like Napster, is a contributory infringer. "The district court determined that plaintiffs had demonstrated they would likely succeed in establishing that Napster has a direct financial interest in the infringing activity. We agree. Financial benefit exists where the availability of infringing material "acts as a 'draw' for customers." -- 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

    I was amazed that Google bought YouTube. It was obvious they were buying into a huge litigation problem.

    • YouTube vs. Napster (Score:3, Interesting)

      by nephridium ( 928664 )
      The difference between Youtube and Napster is that Youtube's 'homemade videos' are far more attractive than e.g. the 'homemade music' of Napster. Additionally Youtube features the preview picture combined with the commenting/rating system to judge whether the video is really something you'd like to watch before wasting time on it.

      Many homemade videos get tons of hits/high ratings such as Ask a Ninja [] - hilarious guy. Furthermore there are the 'video-bloggish' entries, i.e. documentaries that wouldn't be
  • Forget Japanese videos! I'm just p*ssed off that in the last week, YouTube decided to remove the 1985 Chicago Bears Superbowl Shuffle, allegedly for copyright reasons! And right in the middle of one of their greatest seasons ever,. . . da Bears return to the Superbowl (I hope :-)!

    I mean, yeah, it probably was copyrighted and all, but they were, "not doing this because [they were] greedy." "The Bears are doin' it to feed the needy."

    But wait, for some reason, it's still on Google Video [],. . .

  • by PoisonousPhat ( 673225 ) <foblich@netsca[ ]net ['pe.' in gap]> on Friday October 20, 2006 @01:07PM (#16518103)
    Thankfully, the Pythagoras Switch (pitagora suicchi) Rube Goldberg machine videos are still up. Great example of sharing fun stuff from one country to the delight of kids (and adults!) all over the world.
  • Now they aren't getting paid in addition to not getting world-wide exposure.
  • by Suzumushi ( 907838 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @02:03PM (#16518943)
    Oh shucks...a bunch of Japanese media that can't be obtained outside of Japan anyway, will no longer be available in a blurry pixelated format on the internet...Thank god for protecting the artists' rights!!!
  • bullshit (Score:3, Interesting)

    by RecycledElectrons ( 695206 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @02:20PM (#16519161)
    We all know that this censorship makes the Great FireWall of China look puny by comparison.

    They took down political comentary, and criticism of the Jap Govt, not "copyrighted" material.

    Andy Out!
  • by Kazoo the Clown ( 644526 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @06:39PM (#16522905)

    ...ube at all. No doubt they had a hand in reporting the programs and surely will not stop there. They would like to see all foreign programs barred for whatever reason simply because an eyeball glued to YouTube is NOT an eyeball glued to the major networks. If they could ban the home videos on YouTube they'd like to see that done too.

    They perhaps are beginning to realize that the drop in their revenue is not so much because of media piracy, but because there's just so darn much competition that's been enabled by the internet and they're getting beat up. And unfortunately, it's not like there's just one upstart that they can buy-out and assimilate, there's millions of individual, independent content sources out there that's diluting their monopoly. Boo-hoo about that, but watch out because they've got their claws out, and I expect there are some underhanded moves in store up ahead...

    The youth market is no doubt severely affected-- the draw of internet media or video games is dragging the eyeballs away from the dinosaur networks in droves and they're pretty darn scared about it-- or if they aren't, they ought to be. They certainly deserve to be...

"How many teamsters does it take to screw in a light bulb?" "FIFTEEN!! YOU GOT A PROBLEM WITH THAT?"