Thursday, March 15, 2007

Viacom vs. YouTube

Media conglomerate Viacom Inc. said on Tuesday it filed a $1 billion lawsuit against Google Inc. and its Internet video sharing site YouTube over unauthorized use of its copyrighted entertainment.The suit accuses Web search leader Google and YouTube of "massive intentional copyright infringement" of Viacom's entertainment assets and seeks an injunction against further violations.Viacom contends that almost 160,000 unauthorized clips of its programming have been uploaded onto YouTube's site and viewed more than 1.5 billion times.

They said that Google’s acquisition of YouTube would be the act that saved it from the fate of Napster - lawsuit oblivion.And they may have been wrong, if today’s $1 billion lawsuit is a sign of things to come. Viacom, the plaintiff, has been on a warpath against YouTube lately. Unlike Fox’s behind the scenes chats with the Wall Street Journal to get the message across that they were displeased with the Google/YouTube, Viacom has chosen the frontal assault: Massive takedown notices and now the simple request for $1 billion in damages.

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