NBC Enters YouTube Legal Battle

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NBC Universal and Viacom have filed a friend of the court brief that opposes YouTube’s attempt to dismiss a copyright infringement case brought by Los Angeles News Service operator Robert Tur.

Tur sued YouTube in July for allowing users to upload his footage of trucker Reginald Denny being beaten during the 1992 Los Angles riots.

In the brief, submitted last Friday to the U.S. District Court of the Central District of California, NBCU said: "Many of NBCU’s most valuable copyrighted works have been copied, performed, and disseminated without authorization by YouTube and other similarly operated websites."

"NBCU has a strong interest in preserving the strength and viability of all of its legal rights and remedies in response to such conduct."

Tur’s case is seen as important as it could determine if YouTube is protected by the Digtal Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). The act shields a Web site from liability of users actions, as long as the site follows requirements such as deleting content that is copyrighted at a right holders request.

NBC Universal and Viacom’s filing argues,"YouTube actively manipulates and modifies the content in ways that the uploading user clearly does not, including copying, reformatting, and adapting the works… further disseminating them."

"In operating its own commercial Website, YouTube engages in activities that are reserved to the copyright holder."

The filing by NBC Universal came on the same day as a copyright suit against YouTube from the English soccer’s Premier League. That suit also alleges that the video-sharing site is involved in copyright infringement.

NBC Enters YouTube Legal Battle
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