The copyright infringement spat between Google and Viacom continues with both the companies slashing out at each other verbally. YouTube, which is owned by Google now, has sought shelter under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), said Viacom general counsel Michael Fricklas. According to him, YouTube has no right to defend its position claiming that YouTube’s customers are unaware that copyright breaching takes place on the site while the company itself remains ignorant of the fact.

Google has not taken this accusation sitting down, Managing Counsel Michael Kwun for Google said, “an attack on the way people communicate on the Web and on the platforms that allow people to make the Internet their own”. He said Viacom is violating the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

On the other hand Fricklas has written. “YouTube’s own terms of use give it clear rights”. He continued, “notably the right to take anything down. YouTube actively monitors its content. For example, its managers remove pornography and hate content and, as was recently reported, claim they can detect and remove ‘spam.’ Without knowledge and control, how could YouTube create ‘channels’ and ‘featured videos’ sections on its site? YouTube has even offered to find infringing content for copyright owners – but only if they do a licensing deal first.”We know this Already: Viacom Sues YouTube Over Copyrights

Viacom is suing YouTube for USD 1 billion, accusing the company of “willfully infringing copyrights on a huge scale.”

Last month, Viacom had asked YouTube to remove copyrighted clips from the online video source. The amount of video clips to be removed adds up to a staggering 100,000. Viacom claims that YouTube has not set up content filters that allow the copyright holders of videos to know when clips have been uploaded to the YouTube site.

YouTube commented to the demand of removal of clips by saying, “It’s unfortunate that Viacom will no longer be able to benefit from YouTube’s passionate audience which has helped to promote many of Viacom’s shows.”

You Tube also defends its case by saying that they are developing audio fingerprinting technology. The technology is still in its infancy; it aims to provide copyright holders notification when their content is released on the web site.

“Filtering tools promised repeatedly by YouTube and Google have not been put in place, and they continue to host and stream vast amounts of unauthorised video,” Viacom said in a statement.

“YouTube and Google retain all of the revenue generated from this practice, without extending fair compensation to the people who have expended all of the effort and cost to create it,” Viacom said. “The recent addition of YouTube-served content to Google Video Search simply compounds this issue.”

Google, which brought YouTube for USD 1.65 billion, is hoping to convince media companies to allow users to broadcast their content on YouTube. Google was ready to offer upfront payments to media companies for the right to allow users to use their film, TV clips and music on YouTube.

YouTube usually removes copyrighted material from its site when owners inform it about the problem. Recently the site removed content from Comedy Central’s Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert when Viacom asked it to remove. YouTube also signed a contract with the National Hockey League (NHL) to offer game highlights, the latest deal struck by the video sharing sensation as it attempts to stamp out pirated clips from its site and avoid copyright lawsuits.

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