In this story, cats and lame copyright bullshit collide. It's the perfect internet story.
Have you ever heard a cat purring and thought, man this really sounds like that one song? Well, YouTube did. And it recently flagged one cat video with a copyright notice.
In March of 2014, YouTube user Digihaven uploaded this hour-long video of his cat Phantom purring – you know, if you like that sort of thing for relaxation and such. The video existed on YouTube for nearly a year before Digihaven was hit with a copyright notice.
According to TorrentFreak, Phantom's looped purrs were deemed to have ripped off a musical track called "Focus", which belongs to EMI Music Publishing and PRS.
The video was not removed by the false claim, but according to Digihaven monetization was disabled. Luckily he’s not going bankrupt due to the loss of income, but it’s baffling how easy it is to hijack legitimate videos.
“I’m sure EMI/PRS made Phantom a sad kitty. It seems like companies such as EMI are pirating ads on people’s legit videos, so I’m wondering if they apologize to, or reimburse people for those false claims,” he tells TF.
The claim has since been retracted.
The real problem here is YouTube's unreliable Content ID system, whose software can make musical connections where they don''t really exist. This causes quite the headache for YouTubers.
We've seen YouTube flag videos in the past for musical copyright infringement and thought well that's pretty dumb. But this is the first time we've seen a cat flagged.