Know your rights — Fair Use

Ryan —  April 29, 2010 — 2 Comments


[Video via Plankhead on youtube]

You’ve seen videos like these, right? Hitler reacts to “insert popular topic here” A scene from the German movie, Downfall which depicts the final days of Nazi Germany, and Hitler’s death. It’s a popular meme on YouTube, and many other video sharing sites but, unfortunately, this meme has been subject to numerous take-down notices on YouTube directly from the films producers. What’s wrong with them doing this though, it’s their work, isn’t it? Yes, it is true that they have the rights to the scene, but what they’re doing goes against your right to free speech under fair use.

So, onto the problem. The producers of the movie Downfall are filing copyright notices against the Hitler reacts parody videos on YouTube.

The director of this film is quoted to say:

I think I’ve seen about 145 of them! Of course, I have to put the sound down when I watch. Many times the lines are so funny, I laugh out loud, and I’m laughing about the scene that I staged myself! You couldn’t get a better compliment as a director.

Yeah, the director loves them, the people love them, so what’s the big deal? The big deal is that the producers don’t understand what fair use is. For those of you who don’t know, allow me to sum it up.

Fair use is the use of copyrighted material for things such as review, parody, education, or research without disturbing the majority of the work in a monetary sense. So, basically, as long as you’re not reproducing the work, and distributing it as a bootleg product, you’re not infringing.
To read more about the fair use law, click here.

Here in America most people probably never even heard of the movie Downfall until after they watched a few of these videos, so you’d think that the producers would just let it be, but no, instead they believe that it insults the movie, and that their rights are being infringed upon, which as I said, is a false claim.

If you have received a copyright notice on YouTube that you believe is fair use on ANY video, and not just a Hitler reacts video, follow these steps:


[Video Via Rocetboom’s Know Your Meme]

For a preview of the next battle, check out Mike Mozart’s video on Viacom

[Video Via Jeeper’s Media on YouTube]

Oh, and I fucking hate cats, too.

[Yes, another political rant. But this one is something we can all agree on. Free speech is something we need to defend, and this is just a small battle that we need to take care of to defend freedom on the Internet, compared to what we’ll soon have to deal with, like the corporate likes of Viacom doing this same thing on a larger scale, and the ongoing battle for net neutrality against the ISPs. This fight can easily be won, so I’m talking about it first.]

What do you guys think about this? Let me know in the comments.

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  • http://twitter.com/Music_Gurl2007 Ternesha Bradley

    This was a very interesting read! More people need to come together and help defend free speech. I never knew about the fair use rule. This was informative, and I hope others will gain helpful knowledge from this.

  • http://twitter.com/Music_Gurl2007 Ternesha Bradley

    This was a very interesting read! More people need to come together and help defend free speech. I never knew about the fair use rule. This was informative, and I hope others will gain helpful knowledge from this.