I'm deeply troubled over the tone of a new agreement announced today by a cabal of Big Copyright owners.
Entitled User Generated Content Principles- Encourage Creativity-Respect Intellectual Property, the document has been ratified by Disney, CBS, NBC Universal, Fox Entertainment Group, Microsoft, Viacom and a couple of others.
Almost without an exception, Big Copyright.
Reading between the lines, the document calls for stringent technology and policy-based steps to block infringing video content under the aegis of these companies from ever, every seeing the light of day.
In a couple of places, the document refers to "fair use."
But with fair use's parameters still a matter of judicial and regulatory debate, it seems to me that the Copyright Cartel would probably take a very restrictive stance toward fair use.Why? It's in their nature.
This putrid document shows this, I believe. "Fair use" is mentioned briefly, but without definition. It's almost like the lawyers said, "yea, guess we should put something in there about 'fair use.'
What Big Copyright also doesn't understand is the viral and promotional value some infringing video content offers copyrighted content. Reading this document, I don't see a clear understanding or even an acceptance of this proven principle.
Another thing that troubles me: sometimes video content is perishable. But let's just say it is 1 a.m., and clips of the jackknifed truck on the interstate aired on the local 11 p.m. news. What would be so wrong about a viewer uploading a video clip of the coverage to YouTube or some other video sharing site?
Instead I see: this is our video content, and you better not use any of it without us- and our anal legal departments- telling you it is OK.