NFL versus Wendy Seltzer

One way copyright holders have been trying to protect their rights is to exaggerate the scope of those rights. Rather than repeat here what is explained clearly and concisely elsewhere, check out this story on arstechnica.com: NFL fumbles DMCA takedown battle, could face sanctions. It recounts Brooklyn Law School professor and EFF counsel Wendy Seltzer’s battle with the National Football League over her posting a video of the NFL’s copyright notice–just the copyright notice–on YouTube. The NFL overstepped its rights under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act in trying to quash Seltzer’s exercise of fair use rights. (Thanks to JH)

6 thoughts on “NFL versus Wendy Seltzer”

  1. How come it seems like YouTube never gets in trouble? Cheng mentions at the end of the linked article that “the trend du jour is for content owners to target YouTube with these requests, knowing that YouTube is likely to comply immediately and ask questions later.” So why isn’t the NFL also going after YouTube? Or are they and I just didn’t read carefully enough? Shouldn’t YouTube have some sort of screening process for what gets put up and what doesn’t? In this instance, couldn’t Seltzer bring a case against YouTube for allowing her to put up the clip? Or does YouTube have some exculpatory clause that disallows people from suing them for related matters such as this?

  2. If the law disallows it, the NFL should not keep submitting take-down requests to YouTube when Ms. Seltzer, a law professor, has established that her educational use of the video is not infringing on the rights of the organization. It is ironic that the very clip that Professor Seltzer is using to teach her students about how “how content owners are beginning to exaggerate their rights,” is continuously being removed from YouTube by the NFL. Since the NFL has sent takedown notices several times, it is actually in violation of the procedures in the DCMA.

    Professor Seltzer had every right to post that video on her website through YouTube. I agree with levym that YouTube should have a professional screening process and some legal counsel so that they can avoid false claims. Online media protection is a growing issue, and if YouTube does not take steps to protect itself, its troubles with organizations such as the NFL and Viacom will only become worse.

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