So a little while back, G4, among others, reported that Viacom had won a significant victory in the battle against Google-owned YouTube, with a judge ruling that YouTube has to hand over its entire database to Viacom. The database, of course, has al the IPs and all the names, and videos every user has ever watched. Viacom has already issued a statement that they don’t plan on using the information to pursue lawsuits against users, although some people are feeling like some kind of “Order 66” might be executed one day to arrest everyone who’s ever posted Viacom-video footage.
Now, before everyone starts pulling out equally vague and unfunny references to Star Wars to prove their point, I have to say, the hysterics to this are kind of odd to watch. You’ve got the freedom pundits vowing to fight this to their dying breath in a really bad re-enactment of the last scene in Braveheart. You’ve got the people freaking out over possibly being sued, and you’ve got the people coming up with all kinds of scenarios in which it is not safe to double-click on an email of “grandma pwns mercedes”.
I really think that with this, people really are jumping to conclusions. I mean, this isn’t Big Brother (they already have a reality show for that). This could be a good thing actually. How many times have you pulled a search on Youtube for something decent, only to have to wade through 10,000 crap music videos set to Linkin’ Park, people who have no business being on webcam, and boring tutorials given by 15 year olds? With a bunch of copyright infringement notices, we’ll be soon browsing a cleaner, tidier YouTube, because no one wants to see 5 minute clips of Viacom stuff anyway. Sure, Viacom could end up being dicks, but consider that history is on your side, as the companies are too busy suing to change their business model, ensuring that movies are torrented even more. Why wait for a 10 minute clip on YouTube when you could have the whole thing? YouTube down = torrents up, at least until they find a way to sue a decentralized network of geeky kids sitting at their overpowered machines paid for by their parents.
Besides, none of you reading this has ever clicked on that one clip titled “horse impregnates Paris Hilton” anyway….or can at least explain it away by saying “I was really looking for a Britney Spears video”. You’ve got nothing to hide. So stop freaking, out, sit back, and enjoy the show. Just not on YouTube.