Research: Viacom-YouTube=Grokster Part 2?
Grokster Redux: Why the Summary-Judgment Ruling in Viacom v. YouTube Should Be Reversed
The Progress & Freedom Foundation
Thomas D. Sydnor II
Similar to the MGM Studios, Inc. v. Grokster, Ltd. case, the “safe harbor” clause of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) protected YouTube’s founders from civil liabilities because they had responded to take down notices. In the process of doing this they were also allowing for copyright violations and piracy just like the Grokster case.
Because of this, Sydnor feels that the recent Viacom Int’l, Inc v. YouTube, Inc. case is just a repeat of bad judicial decisions allowing for individuals to receive safe harbor even though the government classifies their actions as criminal racketeering enterprises. Additionally he feels that, “The Supreme Court has repeatedly held that ‘[w]hen Congress codifies a judicially defined concept; it is presumed… to adopt the interpretation placed on that concept by the courts.’ Therefore, the DMCA did not adopt judge-defined terms intended to convey the lack of any knowledge requirement in order to tell judges that Congress intended to impose an item-specific knowledge requirement.”
In this article, Sydnor considers the following:
- How the Viacom Opinion created a “safe harbor” for corporations that profit by intentionally massive copyright piracy.
- The elephant in the mousehole: Did President Clinton and Congress really create civil “safe harbors” for criminal racketeering enterprises?
- The “ordinary-meaning rule” proves that the DMCA was not intended to mean the opposite of what legislators should have understood it to say.
Based on the notion that the government has created a safe harbor for criminal enterprise and that the codification of a defined concept is being twisted, Sydnor believes that the ruling will be reversed.
You can find the full article here.