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Ted Olson Wants To Bully YouTube Into Paying Up For Copyright Infringement

Sure, you loooove Ted Olson these days because he’s helping bring down Prop 8, but remember, he’s also the guy who got the Supreme Court to make sure President George W. Bush became president in 2000. Oh, and he’s also the guy who wants to take away your free TV showing web habits.

Olson was just hired by Viacom as counsel in its billion-dollar battle against Google’s YouTube, which is a cesspool of copyright infringement, the media company claims. The lawsuit, now in its third year, most recently went in Google’s favor with a New York district court judge saying YouTube is protected by “safe harbor” rules under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

And while we’re sure all of you willingly obey all facets of copyright law, are you still going to have the warm fuzzies if Olson brings victory to Viacom and has YouTube shelling out billions for your right to watch Teen Mon clips free?

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  • Hyhybt

    The one has nothing to do with the other. Why should we agree or disagree with Viacom just because of their choice of lawyers?

    (I think it’s about far more than copyright, by the way. Viacom’s business is primarily television: one-way communication. If Youtube is guilty of infringement for not stopping people from posting protected material, then unless they can afford to have lawyers comb over every submission before letting it go public, they’re out of business… and ultimately that would apply to every site. No more commenting on news articles or Queerty posts… probably no more blogs or message boards at all, as hosting companies wouldn’t want the liability. The result would be to turn the web into, essentially, a more advanced form of old-style media, like… television. Just their business.)

  • Mike in Asheville

    Just because were gay doesn’t mean dick when it comes to issues like ownership of intellectual property.

    Olsen is being completely consistent in his view of the Constitution: apply the law of the land equally unto all. He supports the gay community, through a view that the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment means that we gays are entitled to all the same rights, including the right to marry the person of our choice.

    The copyright and patent clause, Article 1, Section 8, of the Constitution provides protection of intellectual property rights — a protection for ALL owners, gay, straight or other, of the rights to their artistic creations.


    Remember, Judge Vaughn, as an attorney representing the US Olympic Committee, successfully argued that the “Gay” Olympics violated the USOC’s ownership of the use of “Olympics”. Again, being consistent, Vaughn argued that the Constitution offers protections, as established by Congress. And now, all these years later, being consistent with the Constitution, Vaughn applied the Constitution’s equal protection clause requiring marriage equality.


    If Queerty and other blogs/web sites violate others’ copyrights, why should you, or anyone, be free to take that which belongs to others. Fair use is also protected; but stealing is stealing.

  • Mike in Asheville

    Oops: were [sic] was supposed to be we’re (we are)….

  • Hyhybt

    @Mike in Asheville: Right: but it ISN’T Youtube violating copyright law, but its users. So long as YT removes violations when they’re pointed out, they are, and ought to be, in the clear.


    As long as he stays away from Xtube, I’m good……. :p

  • Clarence J.


    Oslen is a consistent conservative, so I’m not surprised he would take the case.

    It’s also strange how Queerty wants to make it out as if Oslen is the bad guy here, as if fighting for copyright infringement is somehow a bad thing to do. I mean, I hope he looses the case (because goodness knows Youtube would suck if it looses), but I can see where Viacom is coming from.

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