Saturday, October 24, 2009

Music industry begs prosecutors to put present, future on trial

"German music rights holders" have approached the prosecutors in Germany in a bid to have senior YouTube and Google executives put on criminal trial. Because of some unlicensed bits and pieces on YouTube, not because they all grouped together and stole the music industry's shoes while they were swimming.

Criminal prosecutions.

The current investigation started as the result of a formal complaint by Hamburg-based lawyer Jens Schippmann, who represents 25 German musicians, producers and music publishers. Schippmann sued Google in civil court earlier this year, alleging that videos of his clients have been viewed more that 125 million times without any compensation. Schippmann now alleges that Google didn’t respond to requests to take down more that 8,000 videos and that his clients were denied access to the company’s Content ID Program. He also claimed that users would utilize YouTube as a kind of “covert file-sharing platform,” tagging his clients videos with keywords like “album quality” to encourage downloading.

Oh, lord. YouTube as covert file-sharing? Does Schippmann really not understand what he's talking about, or is he simply pretending to be an idiot to try and impress confused prosecutors? Even record labels use YouTube to host content, and they're hardly the sort to promote a covert file-sharing platform.