YouTube shut down one of Blizzard’s YouTube channels for a shocking 40 minute period of time today as the result of alleged copyright violations. Yep, you read that right. The Irvine California based gaming company’s World Championship Series StarCraft YouTube channel was suspended for violating their own copyright by posting content that they actually created.
It seems that DCMA takedowns on YouTube have been a hot topic in the gaming community recently as Activision has been removing gameplay videos of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare that they feel encourage cheating by exploiting in game glitches. The hair trigger for removing content and slapping YouTube channels with copyright infringement strikes came back to bite YouTube and copyright holders today when Blizzard’s own official channel was shut down.
YouTube’s embarrassing shutdown of the World Championship Series StarCraft channel highlights many people’s concerns about the video giant’s often mocked and problematic ContentID system. Many believe that YouTube has finally succumbed to the pressure of content creators to issue copyright strikes with increasing frequency.
A notable YouTube user by the name of TotalBisquid tweeted his disgust with Blizzard’s mistaken removal when he said, “In a demonstration of how ridiculous Youtube’s copyright system is, Blizzards own WCS channel has been suspended.”
Why do the copyright holders care about any potential copyright violations on YouTube? Many movie studios, game developers and publishers, and record companies have a ‘take no prisoners’ approach to try and curb the number of copyright violations that occur. Their desire to minimize such flagrant violations makes sense when you consider that they need to keep ahead of the tide of users uploading entire television series, movies and albums.
However, many argue that if the content creators made their songs, tv shows and movies more readily available, that people would not have to resort to torrenting or YouTube as alternatives to access their content. And it’s a fair point when you consider that such harsh clampdowns on possible copyright violations can lead to ironic and embarrassing occurrences like today’s interruption of Blizzard’s account. The case for such frequent DCMA takedowns is hurt, especially when these types of instances erode users’ faith in the copyright holder’s logic and their methodologies.
What are your thoughts about the increasing willingness to slap YouTube content creators with copyright strikes? Do you think that YouTube has given in to pressure or do you think they are doing the right thing by trying to prevent flagrant copyright violations?