EU member states are getting ready to implement Article 17 of the EU Copyright Directive, which will more or less force every platform that hosts any user-generated content, to either license every damn thing (impossible) or to put in place a tool like ContentID, that automatically spots and takes down “infringing” content. Despite the fact that Google spent over $100 million on its ContentID and competitive offerings (mainly Audible Magic) are quite expensive, defenders of this plan kept insisting that those filters work. Plenty of people have pointed out that they don’t work very well at all, and it’s even worse than just leading to legitimate content being taken down. Having such a tool, means that it will be abused.
CCN.com recently wrote up yet another article highlighting the problem of massive false flagging campaigns showing up for YouTube videos:
The latest problem surrounds mass false copyright claims. It turns out that false claiming someone’s video revenue as your own is so easy that companies can seemingly do it en masse. And these companies aren’t just going after subtle, small-time channels. They’ve hit some of YouTube’s biggest creators.
Much of the article focuses on a company called Studio 71, which is the one filing a bunch of these recent false claims. Lots of folks are online highlighting these bogus takedowns.
I’m getting false copyright claims on my Pokemon videos from a company called Studio71_1_2, which doesn’t own the copyright.
I’m afraid to fight it because the content creator ALWAYS loses. What should I do? pic.twitter.com/jjM3VuBnal
— Skul (@ShurtugalTCG) January 7, 2020
Things I didn’t need today: A false copyright claim by troll account Studio71_1_2 which @YouTube didn’t research, then automatically blocked one of my videos. Thanks. Sorry for those of you without access to one of my Pokemon vids; hopefully will fix soon.
— Joe Zieja @ Anime Impulse (@JoeZieja) January 7, 2020
Hi, Yes, Hello,
A livestream on my channel from November is being blocked (twice) in every country.
Who is Studio71_1_2 and why do they think they own the rights to
— Captain Astronaut (@CptAstro) January 7, 2020
Had someone called Studio 71_1_2 copyright claim several of my Pokemon Shield videos last night, all of which was restored this morning other than my most recent video. Just finished submitting a form disputing it. Will see how long that takes….. pic.twitter.com/OENYVZrje5
— ?Dinkleberry_Crunch? (@DinkleberryC) January 7, 2020
Oh no… I just received my first copyright claims. They’ve showed up multiple times across my latest Pokémon Shield stream.I honestly don’t know what to do… I’m really scared… Plus, I’ve never even heard of this Studio 71_1_2 [email protected] Care to explain this? pic.twitter.com/EWQWkdxEu3
— TentaCole (@TentaColeGaming) January 7, 2020
@Studio71US hey guys – can you fix this please? This hit a lot of us today, this really sucks. You guys of all people should know that this is not the way to handle this. Studio 71 does not own Mario let alone The Witcher 3.
— The Completionist (@JKCompletesIt) January 7, 2020
It is 4 in the god damn morning @YouTube and my phone starts exploding with notifications and since I have it set to silent mode I know it’s some shit goin on! And it was!
These mothafuckas not only claimed – BUT BLOCKED my Witcher 3 videos?!? Oh hell no! Stop this BULLSHIT! pic.twitter.com/dGquTYEODy
— Jesse Cox (@JesseCox) January 7, 2020
There are a lot more like that too.
The company behind all of these claimed that it was “a technical problem with YouTube that is out of our hands” but never quite explained what sort of problem it was.
Hello, there is a technical problem with YouTube that is out of our hands. We are working on releasing all false claims as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.
— Studio71 (@Studio71_com) January 7, 2020
To its (slight) credit, the company claimed that it released all of those claims, even ones not disputed. But still.
++ UPDATE ++ All of yesterday’s incorrect claims have been released by now (no matter if disputed or not).
— Studio71 (@Studio71_com) January 8, 2020
At least one person asked them to explain how it happened and how it can be prevented in the future… and got no answer.
Whether or not this was an overzealous individual, an automated system out of control, or some other failure, it doesn’t change the basic fact that any such filter system will be regularly abused, on purpose or not, to takedown or claim the revenue on tons of content. This is exactly what we tried to tell people in the EU before they voted on the Copyright Directive… and they kept insisting it wouldn’t possibly happen. After all, they said, they wrote into the law that it shouldn’t be abused. I’m sure that will work out just great…
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