The Verge has an article today about the arduous process of hoops YouTube makes publishers jump through if a copyright infringement claim is made against a video. It’s an interesting look behind the scenes of video publishing and the tools YouTube makes available to copyright holders wanting to protect intellectual property. It also highlights the lack of human-based recourse publishers have when it comes to hollow copyright claims.
“Fair use” allows limited use of copyrighted material. This is how parodies and satires get around certain legal restraints. Fair use is also why we can use snippets of articles from other outlets, so long as we don’t use those articles in their entirety.
Even further, automakers make materials available for editorial use on their own press portals. This material is offered free of charge by automakers so we can pimp their products. But sometimes they make a mistake and post the wrong thing.
Volkswagen posted the wrong thing. And now our YouTube channel is crippled.
On December 2015, we posted “LEAKED: Volkswagen Might Show This Full TFT Display, Infotainment System at CES (Video)” with a video showcasing Volkswagen’s then-yet-to-be-shown e-Golf Touch infotainment system that the automaker was planning to show at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
At the time, we said this:
“For instance, Volkswagen will give quite a clear glimpse of the latest developments in in-car infotainment that are on the verge of being launched onto the market. This will see innovations such as the Golf R Touch concept car finding their way into Volkswagen’s broad product portfolio,” the automaker said in a statement.
probablypossibly what we’re looking at here in a B-roll video made by the automaker obtained by TTAC through less-than-official channels.
However, we actually obtained the video through the most official channel you can get in this business: the automaker’s own website. Volkswagen made an oops and we caught them — just like we caught Volvo’s mistake when they accidentally posted shots of the new S90 too early.
In the case of Volkswagen’s video, the automaker had tools available to them to retaliate. And retaliate they did. We’ve been in YouTube Hell ever since.
Thankfully, we haven’t been as restricted as many of those mentioned in The Verge article, but it’s still now more difficult for us to conduct business. We aren’t a large team. We don’t do many videos. But now the ones we post on YouTube come with extra work because of this mess. We’ve made a counterclaim based on the fact the video was downloaded from Volkswagen’s own media site. Fingers crossed we will get our YouTube channel back in good standing.
Until then, thank you, Volkswagen. Thank you ever so much.