Why the Viacom-YouTube Case Wasn’t a Giant Waste of Time

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[Commentary] Here’s what Viacom’s lawsuit actually did: It spurred YouTube to accelerate the development of tools to detect -- and pull down -- copyrighted material, in an automated way.

Given that YouTube users upload 100 hours of video every minute, Viacom (and others) complained that it was not feasible to monitor that volume manually and send out DMCA takedown requests one at a time.

It was only during the Viacom court proceedings that YouTube announced it would filter content for all copyright holders, not just its business partners. No doubt, YouTube would have evolved its practices to a more content-owner-friendly system -- eventually. But the lawsuit prompted it to move more quickly than it would have otherwise, and also served notice to other user-generated content sites that Viacom was prepared to take aggressive legal action.


Why the Viacom-YouTube Case Wasn’t a Giant Waste of Time