Panic over: YouTube viewers are no longer royally screwed

Summary:An update to the YouTube blog yesterday has calmed fears that Viacom would be able to pick out identifiable user information about every video ever watched on YouTube. As answered before in my Q'n'A post, there was a possibility that recriminations could be filed against each individual who watched something which was copyrighted.

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An update to the YouTube blog yesterday has calmed fears that Viacom would be able to pick out identifiable user information about every video ever watched on YouTube. As answered before in my Q'n'A post, there was a possibility that recriminations could be filed against each individual who watched something which was copyrighted.

This isn't the case, finally confirmed by YouTube/Google yesterday:

As we let you know on July 4, YouTube received a court order to produce viewing history data. We are pleased to report that Viacom, MTV and other litigants have backed off their original demand for all users' viewing histories and we will not be providing that information. (Read the official legalese here.)

Not everybody is too happy about it mind you; the general consensus seems that people are grateful that user's information isn't being given to Viacom, however some question whether it should have ever come this far, and if there's any availability to opt out of data collection.

The ironic thing, is the image in this article was taken from an episode of Family Guy which has been left on YouTube. It sems the filter that YouTube uses to remove copyrighted material isn't perfect after all.

As one of the commentators says, Google well and truly dodged a bullet today.

Topics: Browser, Social Enterprise

About

Zack Whittaker writes for ZDNet, CNET, and CBS News. He is based in New York City.

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