skip to Main Content

Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

This week, our first place winner on the insightful side is an anonymous comment about publishers claiming that their lawsuit against the Internet Archive won’t impact any of its services beyond the Open Library:

About as believable as Putin’s claim tat 96% of those polled wanted to become Russians.

In second place, it’s a lengthy comment from Rico R. responding to an attempt to defend the court ruling that says YouTube ripping tools may violate copyright:

A few problems with your attempted distinctions, point for point:

1) youtube’s watch page is working exactly how google designed their web site to work.

Can’t disagree there.

2) youtube-dl on the other hand, does something that youtube’s terms of service are explicitly forbidding, i.e. moving the videos outside of youtube platform

Yes, YouTube’s terms of service prohibit downloading YouTube videos. But that doesn’t make it an inherent copyright violation, be it infringement or circumventing technical protection measures.

3) The reason for the TOS forbid is because google has only required video authors to give a license to use the videos within the youtube system. Video authors do not need to give any more flexible licenses to google than whatever the upload button paperwork requires. Thus taking videos outside of youtube platform is illegal, because google does not have permission to do it. If google doesn’t have permission to do it, then youtube’s end users don’t have the permission either.

Uh, no. YouTube’s terms of service gives Google a license to the content uploaded to their platform, but that doesn’t mean it’s copyright infringement if a third party (i.e., a user using youtube-dl and ISN’T Google) downloads it. In fact, YouTube has an option that enables you to release your YouTube video under a Creative Commons-Attribution license. Not the default option, I know, but even the CC BY videos designated as such on YouTube don’t have a download button that enables the same functionality as youtube-dl. Using youtube-dl or any other tool to download those videos is permitted under those terms. And if YouTube says its TOS still trumps the terms of the Creative Commons license, then THEY are breaking the license terms. Under the logic of this lawsuit, YouTube is adding a TPM to CC-licnesed videos uploaded to their platform, and CC licensees may NOT add TPMs according to the license terms.

But still, let’s say we’re talking about the larger subset of YouTube videos under the “Standard YouTube License.” Google has a license to the content when people post their videos on YouTube. The TOS covers what they can and cannot do with that content. But whatever rights Google may have doesn’t affect whether or not a third party can download the video without infringing copyright. Remember, breaking YouTube’s terms of service does not automatically make it copyright infringement. At most, it’s a contract violation between Google and the end user who downloaded the content.

4) there is alternative that users who want to download the videos from youtube, will separately ask for permission from the video authors. Unfortunately, the contact addresses are generally not available for videos, so side-channel permission requests are generally failing in youtube platform.

This logic assumes the only way you can legally download a YouTube video (assuming you’re not breaking the TOS or the so-called “TPM”) requires permission from the video’s uploader/creator. But there’s many non-infringing reasons to download YouTube videos. Perhpas to download the video to watch later (time-shifting). Or perhaps you have a slow Broadband connection wherever you live, and you want to watch the YouTube video in the highest possible quality without interruption. Or perhaps you want to listen to a YouTube video’s audio on the go without displaying the video. Or perhaps you want to make a fair use of the video’s content. None of those require permission from the creator. And if you wanted to use the content in a way that required permission, there’s no reason why you should have to also ask the video’s creator to send a copy of the video to them. The fact that YouTube doesn’t provide an easy way to contact any user privately is irrelevant to this discussion.

For editor’s choice on the insightful side, we start out with a comment from Stephen T. Stone about The Onion’s excellent amicus brief:

When The Onion is writing better legal briefs about free speech than the kinds of people who claim to be “defenders of free speech“…well, that’s a story you might actually read in The Onion.

Next, it’s a comment from Toom1275 about one of the right’s favorite words:

In modern usage, “Woke” means “Not an irredeemable piece of shit, unlike the one using the term as a pejorative.”

Over on the funny side, our first place winner is Anonymous Hero with a comment about Elon Musk’s texts:

My favorite excerpt: “I have an idea for a blockchain social media system that does both payments and short text messages/links like twitter … The second piece of the puzzle is a massive real-time database that keeps a copy of all blockchain messages in memory”

Can you believe it? A massive database! Of the block chain! In memory!

In second place, it’s BvR with a comment about Republicans:

The GQP often complains that government doesn’t work.

Then, when they get voted in, they prove it.

For editor’s choice on the funny side, we start out with a comment from glenn about OAN’s attempt to survive by using over-the-air antennas:

OAN: so worthless that they can’t give it away.

Finally, it’s a simple anonymous comment about Laura Loomer’s latest legal loss:

OK, Loomer.

That’s all for this week, folks!

Go to Source
Author: Leigh Beadon

Back To Top