In a legendarily stupid move by YouTube, game critic “Angry” Joe Vargas posted a video criticizing YouTube’s new “Heroes” system which was promptly, and illegally, taken down via a copyright claim.
YouTube, better known as the only American dumpster fire to rival our presidential election, has had a hard year. For years, creators on the site have complained about the site’s atrocious (and literally criminally broken) copyright system. The system has been abused by thousands of companies to silence criticism, delete channels an individual disagrees with, and in doing so, disrupt someone’s livelihood.
“Studio 71_2_1" is the “company” responsible for the copyright claim issued to Vargas’s video, but as it may be obvious, Studio 71_2_1 is not an actual company and has been operating on YouTube harassing people for years. The “company” exists with the sole purpose of issuing takedowns of people’s intellectual property and has been doing so for a long time.
Why has the “company” been allowed to operate on YouTube for so long? No one knows! Its simply an example of YouTube not caring enough to fix its own broken and illegal copyright system.
Fun fact, issuing a false copyright claim is considered a felony as it is in violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act! Funny fact, the DMCA is actually responsible for YouTube’s atrocious copyright system being implemented when YouTube was (unsuccessfully) sued by Viacom because YouTube hosted tons of illegally posted Viacom content.
If you haven’t heard, Youtube is actually in the middle of another lawsuit in regards to its terrible copyright-protection system. Funny enough, the lawsuit is being led by Taylor Swift because she claims the copyright system doesn’t claim ENOUGH videos! Even worse, she’s right!
Have you ever looked up a song on YouTube and found a “lyrics” version with a plain flat-color background with windows movie maker lyrics on the screen? The videos with tens of millions of views? Those are illegal! Yeah, those aren’t supposed to be on the site because the people who upload those videos have no ownership of the intellectual property that is said video.
YouTube is both knowingly hosting illegal piracy, it is also supporting the breaching of its contracts with YouTubers by allowing for illegal video take-downs.
YouTube’s copyright system is very much akin to a boss asking an employee to write a report. After a day of work, the employee hands the report they spent the day writing to their boss. Mid-way through the boss writing the employee’s paycheck for their day of hard work, a homeless man walks through the front door of the office, into the room the employee and their boss are in, and tears up the check. The employee’s boss responds with “oh well, I guess I can’t pay you today, see you tomorrow!”
The copyright system over at YouTube is almost entirely automated. Youtube employs a ludicrously small amount of people to manage the millions of hours of content uploaded to the site every day.
A simple way to fix this issue was... crowd-sourcing! But you may be asking, isn’t the weekly issue with YouTube caused by a crowd-sourcing project? The answer is yes, but only because the program is so terrible.
Instead of rewarding people for mass-flagging videos (that’s just INVITING the hordes of 4-Chan to delete channels on YouTube), use the system employed by Valve in the game Counter Strike: Global Offensive. The system, called the “Overwatch” system allows players of the game to view random matches played in the game and determine whether or not the player being shown is hacking. The system has tons of random players work towards making the game a friendlier place.
Imaging doing the same with YouTube. By assigning randomly reported videos to “heroes” there is less bias involved. If you have no idea who the person who made a video is, you wouldn’t have a distaste for said person prior to watching the video and thus you are more likely to fairly report on the video’s legitimacy. That would truly make the people reviewing videos “Heroes.” The people who would review videos would have to be brave enough to risk being met face to face with “shock porn” or other distasteful content. Additionally, it would further protect copyright law. By having viewers report videos for copyright infringement instead of robots, you are receiving a much more intelligent and fair judgement. A system like this could fix two of the site’s biggest issues.
YouTube has no competition, and thus has no reason to fix its many issues in a way that isn’t their own unless they’re threatened with having their money taken from them.
I genuinely hope someone partnered with YouTube (hopefully Vargas, that would be amazing) files a class-action lawsuit against Google (they own YouTube) as they have willfully breached the contracts of thousands of career YouTubers by preventing them from profiting from their many hours of work.
If you applied for a job, and you were told “oh by the way, we may decide to not pay you when we feel like not paying you,” would you take that job?
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