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Ask Slashdot: How To Fight Copyright Violations With DMCA? 455

Posted by timothy
from the which-narrative-do-you-prefer? dept.
szyzyg writes "I've created some popular science videos showing how asteroid discoveries have happened over the last few decades. However I've run into a problem with a religious organization which borrowed my video and redubbed it to promote their religious message. Ultimately I filed a DMCA takedown request via YouTube's site, it's as easy as filling in a form and the video was removed. But this organization has since submitted a counterclaim claiming 'under penalty of perjury' that they do in fact have the rights to this work, and YouTube has reinstated the video. It looks like the only way I can pursue this further is to spend the money to take the organization to court and get an injunction, but even if I did so I'd have to pay court costs up front and since they're based in another country I'd have a difficult time actually collecting any money from the other party. It feels like this other group is simply gambling that I won't spend the time and resources to take further legal action, the DMCA is supposed to provide equal protection but the more lawyer you have the more 'equal' you are. So does anyone have any suggestions for how I should proceed here?"
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Ask Slashdot: How To Fight Copyright Violations With DMCA?

Comments Filter:
  • The DMCA (Score:5, Insightful)

    by santax (1541065) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @02:01PM (#41429927)
    Doesn't mean shit outside the USA. Thank God.
  • 1. Read and understand the law before you try to apply it.
    2. Decide if you really want to pull the trigger.
    3. Hire a lawyer.

  • by truedfx (802492) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @02:08PM (#41429999)
    Either you're telling the truth, or they're telling the truth. I don't want to judge that, Youtube doesn't want to judge that, a judge should be the judge of that. And until a judge has looked at it, what reason is there to take down the video again?
  • by szyzyg (7313) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @02:08PM (#41430003)

    Yes, but that would cost money, and while I could probably get damages It would be practically impossible to collect on them.

  • financial impact (Score:3, Insightful)

    by InPursuitOfTruth (2676955) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @02:10PM (#41430031)
    I missed the financial impact in your post. Are you just offended they re-used your works, or is it impacting your sales?
  • Re:The DMCA (Score:5, Insightful)

    by girlintraining (1395911) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @02:18PM (#41430091)

    Doesn't mean shit outside the USA. Thank God.

    Unfortunately, the USA doesn't care about inconveniences like sovereignty of a foreign nation. And you better not complain, or we'll bring Democracy to your country too. We've been very busy creating new treaties to expand DMCA-like law to other countries, building up extradition, and creating extrajudicial process to punish people who commit acts considered criminal in our country but not theirs. At the same time, we've been withdrawing from treaties that restrict the diplomatic rights and sovereignties of others, for the benefit of our military-industrialist complex. Ask Julian Assange how that works sometime... that is, if you can get him out of his new permanent jail in the Ecudorian apartme--er, embassy.

  • by tepples (727027) <tepples.gmail@com> on Sunday September 23, 2012 @02:25PM (#41430161) Homepage Journal

    The video used my name, and picture and implies that my research supports their creationist message.

    Then you likely have a defamation or publicity claim to add to your copyright infringement claim. Make sure to bring these up at the initial consultation with your lawyer.

  • You're screwed. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SuricouRaven (1897204) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @02:27PM (#41430181)
    It's always been this way. Law is expensive. Lawyer costs, court costs, transport, time off work. Even when the case is open-and-shut, it'll cost a small fortune to fight. This isn't new: It goes back as far as law does. Call it the cynic's golden rule: He who has the gold makes the rules.

    You came here hoping someone would offer you the legal magic bullet - some way that lets you bypass all the expensive bits in between where you are now and where you legally should be. But there isn't one. This isn't even a politically important case, so you can't expect any activist group to come to your aid with money and experts. Basically, you're screwed. You really only have two options:

    1. Accept it. Let them have your video.
    2. Get MAD. Spend your savings and go through some legal hell. You'll win, easily, but all you will win is petty revenge. The victory will hurt more than just giving up. With a bit of luck you might be able to get them to cover some of the legal costs, but don't count on that even covering all the expenses.
  • by devleopard (317515) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @02:28PM (#41430187) Homepage

    Public defenders are for those accused of criminal acts. This is a civil case. So no, the OP can't spend tax payer dollars to enforce their copyright.

    However, you might be thinking of finding a copyright friendly attorney to do it pro bono, it which case there's no limitations.

  • by phantomfive (622387) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @02:48PM (#41430367) Journal
    Ha, World War III? If there is a WWIII over the middle east, it will be every other country in the world coming together, destroying the region, then negotiating how to split the remaining oil. None of the major powers care enough about the people in the Middle East to actually fight each other.
  • by man_of_mr_e (217855) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @02:50PM (#41430393)

    Yes, but you would have to get a prosecutor to take the case. Unlikely they will prosecute a religious organization for perjury when they are in a different country.

  • Re:Play God (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Qwertie (797303) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @02:52PM (#41430409) Homepage
    Or, you could just not worry about this weird video because it had well under 10,000 views before it appeared on Slashdot and currently has only 22 likes. And half of those likes may come from people that enjoy watching crazy nutters. The only harm comes from people believing the video, and the Slashdot crowd won't.
  • by fredprado (2569351) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @03:17PM (#41430551)
    Those kind of "Slashdotters" are usually a lot more coherent than "Slashdotters haters Slashdotters" like you. ;)

    That said, most slashdotters are not against copyright per se, but against the abuse of copyright by corporations, the use of public money to defend their rights while the common citizen have to bankrupt himself to have any chance of having justice made, and the erosion of fair use promoted by those same big corporations.

    Your limited capacity of understanding these concepts is what brings you to perceive their opinions as something paradoxical.
  • Re:The DMCA (Score:5, Insightful)

    by cusco (717999) <brian.bixby@NOspam.gmail.com> on Sunday September 23, 2012 @03:53PM (#41430877)
    If you watch the video in question you'd rather quickly realize that 'asking nicely' isn't going to do any good. They've rather blatantly taken his work, which very clearly refers to new asteroids discovered because of improved detection , and made it into an apocalyptic scare video where the asteroids are appearing out of nowhere to threaten Earth. From 8000 asteroids known in 1980 to the 300000+ known today, they want the audience to believe that they are massing for some kind of cataclysmic attack. Not anyone likely to listen to a request 'asked nicely'.
  • Re:The DMCA (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Hatta (162192) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @04:23PM (#41431049) Journal

    Unfortunately, the USA doesn't care about inconveniences like sovereignty of a foreign nation.

    Doubly unfortunately, they'll only project their laws across borders if you're a billion dollar corporation.

  • Re:The DMCA (Score:5, Insightful)

    by hoggoth (414195) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @04:26PM (#41431067) Journal

    Yes, they are clearly crazy and stupid. So make a new video mocking them! The more outrageous the better. Use their own stupidity in your video. Find out what other crazy beliefs they hold and promote and include those. You may have noticed that John Stewart and Sarah Silverman get more views than some wrinkled prune screaming about the apocalypse.

    Or have a contest to see who can make the funnier mocking video. Let us all in on the fun!

  • Re:The DMCA (Score:4, Insightful)

    by wbr1 (2538558) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @05:15PM (#41431325)
    Not only this, but if they have their own (actuall thiers) vids, remake and crappyify them and pots them as video responses on thier channel.
  • Re:Play God (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mbunch5 (548430) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @05:46PM (#41431557)

    Or, you could just not worry about this weird video because it had well under 10,000 views before it appeared on Slashdot and currently has only 22 likes. And half of those likes may come from people that enjoy watching crazy nutters. The only harm comes from people believing the video, and the Slashdot crowd won't.

    Seriously. Since the OP posts on Slashdot, presumably he understands the Streisand effect. Practically no one was paying attention to the remake before you called attention to it here. Just roll with it and understand that more people are mocking this guy than believing him. If that just won't sit well with you, then you need to consult a lawyer versed in internet law -- though preferably not the one that tried to sue TheOatmeal....

  • by Pseudonym (62607) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @09:16PM (#41432759)

    If astronomers could afford congressmen, the US wouldn't be in the mess it's in today.

The secret of success is sincerity. Once you can fake that, you've got it made. -- Jean Giraudoux

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