Lots of recent sabre-rattling directed at YouTube, who have come out of nowhere to be the one of the most-trafficked video web sites. In the past couple of weeks, they’ve been hit with a pair of high-profile “get that thing off of your site” letters from uptight copyright holders, making people wonder if they can avoid being tagged the “Video Napster.”
What happens when you are at least partially responsible for creating huge buzz for a show that hasn’t had huge buzz in years? You Tube and the “Lazy Sunday” video, you get a Cease and Desist letter from NBC. Back in late December, I was one of god-knows-how-many bloggers who, after seeing this either on Saturday Night Live or from email or a blog, posted a link to YouTube.
It seemed to be one of those win-win-win situations: the video itself was funny as frack and perfectly pitched; NBC originally posted it for free in iTunes a couple of days later (they charge for it now, and that’s OK, too); and SNL got a shitload of goodwill like they haven’t had in years. So yay! Until now.
NBC, pursuant to 17 U.S.C. Section 512 as amended by Title II of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (the “Act”), reserves the right, but not the obligation, to terminate your license to use the Service if it determines in its sole and absolute discretion that you are involved in infringing activity, including alleged acts of first-time or repeat infringement, regardless of whether the material or activity is ultimately determined to be infringing.
So everybody, let’s act in good faith, send them their video back, and promise never ever to do it again.