YouTube Kills Fair Use, Mutes Audio

Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
| VoIP & Gadgets blog - Latest news in VoIP & gadgets, wireless, mobile phones, reviews, & opinions

YouTube Kills Fair Use, Mutes Audio

Apparently YouTube has decided to ignore the whole "fair use" thing. You know, the law whereby you are allowed limited use of copyrighted material without requiring permission from the rights holders, such as use for scholarship or review. Fair use also allows for copyrighted materials to be used in spoofs, parodies, etc.

Many YouTube users create an original video using their favorite song as the audio in the background. They won't be able to do that any more, since YouTube has started muting any videos that use unauthorized copyrighted music. You will see a message at the bottom of the video that says "Notice This video contains an audio track that has not been authorized by all copyright holders. The audio has been disabled. More about copyright"

You can see examples here, here and here.

Now does background music mixed into a video constitute "fair use" or copyright infringement? That's a good question. Certainly, someone could strip the audio from the YouTube video and then upload to their MP3 player. Why they would do that is beyond me since the audio bitrate on YouTube isn't that great and often times the music is overlaid on top of people's voices speaking on the video.

But how far does this go? What if I capture a home video with my CD player playing music in the background with my 2.5 year old daughter dancing to it? Will YouTube "silence" the audio leaving my daughter dancing in eerie silence?

I think copyright holders need to get a grip in the digital age. Besides, people don't go to YouTube to listen to music for free. They go for the fun & entertaining videos. By removing the YouTube user's artistic license and replacing it with silence I feel as though my 1st Amendment right to "freedom of speech" has been silenced. Where's the ACLU when you need them?

via Mashable

Related Articles to 'YouTube Kills Fair Use, Mutes Audio'

Featured Events