Sunday, May 30, 2021

Social media attorney analyzes YouTube tech channel legal mistakes; interesting observations on EU Copyright Directive, and on "secondary" community guidelines strikes


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Ian Corzine, who calls himself “your social media lawyer”, runs down the “5 Worst Tech Video Mistakes” in a 59-minute recent video.

You need to watch the video and hear his examples (and yes there is a beanie cap, but not from whom you expect):

In reverse order, #5 pertains to not following YouTubes detailed disclosure rules on doing product giveaways.  No boosts, no quid pro quo, and you must provide full rules and link to YT community guidelines.  Some of these rules are FTC mandated (and similarly in other countries).

#4 was surprisingly interesting.  Don’t give too many hyperlinks in your video description (I see this done a lot in many political videos).  He says, YT can give you a community guidelines strike if the site you link to violates community guidelines (hate speech).  I haven’t heard of this one before.  In my own small channel, I link to my own blog that invokes my video, but I know my own channel. He recommends going through a Google Docs page for hyperlinks rather than putting in the links directly. An important practical consideration is diverting visitors away from YouTube to conventional news sites. 

#3 is trademark problems.  Normally, in showing a product, you don’t need to remove the trademark symbol because the company wants it shown anyway (unless you use it to mispresent the product).

#2 is not having a disclaimer that you are not a professional (unless you are – he names Louis Rossmann as a professional repair person for Apple, although Mr. Clinton the Cat (and BlackBerry and Oreo) are not included (although they generate a lot of his views).  For what it’s worth, Mr. Clinton is an extremely charismatic and intelligent (and talkative) cat who knows he’s famous. Lawyers (like Corzine) of course can say they are professionals, but even they say for definitive advice you need your own attorney.  Echo!

#1 is copyright, without permission or license, or without fair use.  A caller asked about the European Union Article 17 and filters.  Corzine said that at least in the EU YouTube and other platforms are not allowing amateurs to become content providers at all because of the secondary liability risk.  They are using upload filters everywhere, and at least in the EU at least are probably vetting new content providers.  I suspect that will eventually happen in the US.  That’s were we run full circle, and the concept of “commercial viability” becomes important.  Actually, conventional embeds and hyperlinks may not be as "safe" from copyright claims as they used to be (see Feb 17 2018 link on an NYState case). 

My own favorite tech channel is ThioJoe, which has a gentler touch than many of the others. 

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