Monday, September 18, 2006

Cybertainment: A Sign of the Times

YouTube's popularity has exploded over the past year, coining the phrase cybertainment. Good Morning America frequently features a YouTube video as part of their human interest stories. The mainstream press covered the story about user LonelyGirl15. US television station NBC used YouTube to promote its fall lineup. The most recent development that demonstrates the popularity of the cybertainment boom is the news about Warner Music agreeing to distribute and license its copyrighted songs and other material through YouTube (Liedtke).

Another interesting thing that I spotted in the AP story was that YouTube has developed a system to detect when homemade videos are using copyrighted material, which will allow Warner's to review the material and decide whether to accept or reject it (Liedtke). I think that this is a good thing.

Lately, it appears that YouTube has been overzealous about determining what is a violation of copyrighted material. In YouTube's defense, they were being threatened with legal action by Universal, and I think that they would rather be safe than sorry. This new technology will allow YouTube to let the owner know about videos using the owner's material, and the owner of the copyrighted material can review the material and determine whether it is fair use or not.

Source: Michael Liedtke. Warner to Issue Music Through YouTube. Associated Press, 18 September 2006. Retrieved 18 September 2006 from

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