2006-07-21

Why is YouTube so bad? :O

There seem to be a big fuzz right now about the terms and conditions that YouTube is changing to. Through these, YouTube is claiming rights to do what they want with what people upload to them.

I am claiming, however, that YouTube is on the right track, that there is nothing I can see that is very worrying, and in fact, that YouTubes terms and conditions isn't that far off from how many, but not all, pirates want copyright legislation to look.

The allegedly controversial and fought over passus looks like this:

…by submitting the User Submissions to YouTube, you hereby grant YouTube a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free, sublicenseable and transferable license to use, reproduce, distribute, prepare derivative works of, display, and perform the User Submissions in connection with the YouTube Website and YouTube's (and its successor's) business ... in any media formats and through any media channels.

Now, what is the active, the most important word of this passus? The answer is: non-exclusive. YouTube claims a non-exclusive right to use, reproduce, distribute, prepare derivate works of, display and perform what you download to them. This means that they want to use the materials they host - but it says outright that this right does not exclude anyone from using it.

All text on Piracy Unlimited is under a creative commons license, that says that what you find on this site, when it comes to the texts, you can use, reproduce, distribute, prepare derivate works of, display and perform, whoever you are - under the condition that whatever result produced from this, will also be under this same license.

In other words, to be perfectly clear, I put more regulations on my rights to my texts on Piracy Unlimited than YouTube does in their terms and services. They say they want the right to use the stuff, but doesn't exclude anyone from doing the same. I say everyone can do this, but only if the end result is treated the same way. Granted, my regulations might make information more free in the long run - or maybe I just flatter myself by saying so - but the truth is that I put some manner of protective exclusiveness on my work, while YouTube, in their terms and conditions, simply do what pirates do when they say they want to make downloading legal:

"We want the rights to download, use, exchange and redo this material - but we don't say that others can't do the same thing." That's non-exclusive, and it's very important to remember this, before making something a hot potatoe just because it contains the word "copyright" or is related to it. :)

Now, if anyone can explain what is so bad about this deal, please do this to me. Send mails, write comments, cause I want to know what the fuzz about. To me, this simply looks like a company that comes way closer to what copyright legislation should look like, than the legislation we currently have, at least here in Sweden.

6 comments:

rasmus said...

I'm not saying that YouTube is "bad", but it's a bit problematic. But the reason is not the formal copyright clause, but the real possibilities and limitations of the interface (which is almost always much more interesting than legal code).

As I've written before, YouTube gives you the illusion of free sharing, while it in facts does everything it can to hinder you from downloading and redistributing the movie clips. Of course you can do it, but it requieres a certain amount of skill and patience. Instead, YouTube lets you share the link, while trying to keep the clip itself on their central server. Which means, under their central command. They can remove it any time, by any reason.
Therefore, instead using Bittorrent for decentralised distribution should always be considered before uploading anything "unique" to YouTube or Google Video.

Thaumiel said...

Of course this can present a problem - but a problem that can be solved by keepvid, for example? What other methods are there?

The main reason to use YouTube, at least for me, would not be to make it available as a "product", if you get my drift, but to make it easily accessible and - which is important for a blogger like me who likes to do this - for embedding it, as you've seen examples of.

While I agree that the best way to make your work available as a file is by sharing through file sharing networks - and YT is not a file sharing network from what I can see - but BT has the flaw, that it often takes a while to download something, depending on the number of seeders and so on. YT can make it possible to see the clip, if that's all that interests the visitor, without having to actually download it first.

drrignell said...

i don´t completely understand how it's done yet, but it seems that the Democracy Player might be what we(I) are looking for. It is an open source, p2p video/TV solution. It uses RSS and in some cases torrent technology to download videos and then plays them, all integrated in one nice (though incomplete) interface!

I say, upload our movies to trackers and/or with Broadcastmachine instead, these two tools are well integrated and most of youtube's lack of joyness is bypassed.

Though I do agree with thaumiels analyse of youtube's new clause.

coolwiiplayer500 said...

its very bad.it has cusswords,viruses,violince.kids should never watch it

Meredith said...

Lately alot of videos have been removed I've had two of my video removed, nothing illegal about them, they were just videos of my two guinea pigs. I didn't even have any music just the sounds of my voice and my guinea pigs, but apparenty that's illegal. I've been seeing 'rude' videos on youtube that haven't been removed that I have reported and are still on there after a few months. I think it's a bit wacked out.

I've also noticed Sim 2 video being removed but if you go onto to the sims 2 website and register, download a credit video and use that on your video they are ok for your video to be uploaded. I've seen video's with this 'credit' video at the end being removed because they've been reported for using sims 2 when that person has been given permission to use sims 2.

It makes me wonder if the staff actually view videos that have been reported, rather than just remove them as soon as a video get's a certain amount of 'flags'??

Thaumiel said...

I think that may very well be the case, honestly. This should amount to the actual workload of YouTube moderators which should probably be humongous. Of course, it's not a good solution, to say the least, but it's a solution I believe that many sites may well use from the results I've observed.