YouTube rolls out anti-piracy tool

Written by Tim Smalley

October 16, 2007 | 13:14

Tags: #anti #database #piracy #pirated #system #tool #upload #uploads #video #visual #youtube

Companies: #google

Yesterday, Google rolled out a new anti-piracy tool onto YouTube, which identifies pirated video as it is uploaded.

The automated system checks all video as it’s uploaded to the site and attempts to match it to a database of visual abstractions from copyrighted material. However, the catch is that the copyrighted material has to be in YouTube’s database before it can be detected.

This means that the burden is now on the content owners, who have to provide copies of the copyrighted content to YouTube, so that the company can add it to its database.

Depending on the content provider’s wishes, there are a number of outcomes for when copyrighted material is detected by the system. YouTube will either block it, post it or put advertisements into the content, with revenue being shared with the content owner.

The Internet giant first talked about all of this in a US District Court at the end of July, saying that it would be rolled out by the end of September. Obviously, it’s a little later than planned but according to YouTube executives, this is the first image-recognition software to be implemented on a large scale.

Viacom, one of the companies that has filed a copyright lawsuit against YouTube, is “delighted that Google is stepping up to its responsibility and ending the practice of profiting from infringement.” However, the company has always maintained that a filtering system would not end the current lawsuit because the company believes it’s owed damages for past infringements.

Bob Tur, the journalist who was the first to file a lawsuit against the video sharing site was less than happy though. “What a slap in the face to copyright holders,” he said, “Help us not infringe your material. Please give us a copy of everything you’ve copyrighted and we’ll do the rest.

Do you think this is a good move, or is it a slap in the face for the content owners? Share your thoughts in the forums.
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