/** */ File under bound-to-happen: Viacom sues Youtube | Adland

File under bound-to-happen: Viacom sues Youtube

Viacom has pulled out the big guns after getting tired of asking youtube to take their content down, and now sues Youtube and its parent company Google for $1 billion in damanges. Yikes.
See MSN: Media conglomerate claims massive intentional copyright infringement

In a statement, Viacom lashed out at YouTube's business practices, saying it has "built a lucrative business out of exploiting the devotion of fans to others' creative works in order to enrich itself and its corporate parent Google."

Viacom said YouTube's business model, "which is based on building traffic and selling advertising off of unlicensed content, is clearly illegal and is in obvious conflict with copyright laws."

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Anonymous Adgrunt's picture
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caffeinegoddess's picture

Which is why cable providers have introduced the whole "on demand" concept.

purplesimon's picture

Personally, I don't see it as a pickle. What is likely to happen is that people will watch shows they want to watch on a subscription basis - like on demand but offering listings of everything that could be watched. You just pay for the shows you want to watch. You could also subscribe to a channel and get access to all their shows.

You see, as a consumer, I want my own TV channel: one I control, one where I choose the programmes and the order in which they're shown. It's the enxt obvious step for on demand services - pay-per-view on everything except BBC content (we pay the annual licence fee for that). I believe this is the way forward. Almost as if Goo-Tube was offered on television.

What does this mean for advertising? The death of advertising has been heralded for the past decade and it's still not come about. All that will happen (and is happening) is that budgets will move from one medium (TV) to another (Internet).

Of course, I could well be completely wrong. It wouldn't be the first time. ;-)

malkie66's picture

It's a funny thing. YouTube says they're concerned about infringing copyright - even warning you when you post a vid not to copy tv shows or ads but then they don't police it. Sometimes they even feature copyrighted material. It's gonna be interesting to see what happens.

areia's picture

Yes, it's terribly confusing - "do as I say don't do as I do.." kinda vibe going on.
It's likely that those thingS they feature are the result of those famous deals they struck with various content producers out there. (didn't they just sign a deal with the BBC?) But youtube's deal with the BBC still doesn't give joe random user the OK to upload BBC stuff.. Also, how can we tell the difference? I don't know if "joe778" is the guy who has the right to upload all the episodes of UPN's "americans next top model", nor do I care to play internet detective to find out. Youtube should not only be policing better, they should make it more clear when it is the copyright holder who put up their own stuff, versus joe-random-user who put up someone elses stuff. I don't know how they can do that though. Maybe make the "BBC" logo instead of the username. All clips from the BBC look the same to me.

purplesimon's picture

A cynical person would assume that, because TV ad revenues are dropping like the proverbial flies and people aren't watching the glowing-box-in-the-corner as much as they used to, this is Viacom's way to getting its annual profits up.

Whereas Google is making money hand-over-fist with its ads.

I say a cynical person. Who in advertising is cynical?

Dabitch's picture

I'm not. I'm just a big fat liar.
This is a bit of a pickle though - since the advertising on networks pays for the development of shows, and then these shows are watched on websites instead (presumably to avoid the commercial break - ain't got nothing to do with TV when you want it, no sireee) - where there's *gasp* ads supporting the website.. Kinda makes you wonder what the viewers are running away from.

See that's the problems, the viewers aren't running away, they just want to see specific clips from TV when they want to. If real TV's could do that, youtube wouldn't have much to offer except angstful teens yapping about life with their friends.