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posted by martyb on Tuesday November 17 2020, @05:23AM   Printer-friendly
from the Draconian-Monsterous-Copyright-Abomination dept.

Standing up for developers: youtube-dl is back

Today we reinstated youtube-dl, a popular project on GitHub, after we received additional information about the project that enabled us to reverse a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) takedown.

[...] GitHub handles DMCA claims to maximize protections for developers, and we designed our DMCA Takedown Policy with developers in mind. Nearly every platform with user-generated content accepts and processes DMCA takedown notices to comply with the law. For GitHub, many of those notices come from developers wanting us to enforce the terms of their open source licenses, for example, when someone is using their code without the proper attribution required by the open source license they adopted.

[...] As we explained, the key claim in the youtube-dl takedown is circumvention. Although we did initially take the project down, we understand that just because code can be used to access copyrighted works doesn't mean it can't also be used to access works in non-infringing ways. We also understood that this project's code has many legitimate purposes, including changing playback speeds for accessibility, preserving evidence in the fight for human rights, aiding journalists in fact-checking, and downloading Creative Commons-licensed or public domain videos. When we see it is possible to modify a project to remove allegedly infringing content, we give the owners a chance to fix problems before we take content down. If not, they can always respond to the notification disabling the repository and offer to make changes, or file a counter notice.

That's what happened in this case. First, we were able to reinstate a fork of youtube-dl after one of the fork owners applied a patch with changes in response to the notice.

Then, after we received new information that showed the youtube-dl project does not in fact violate the DMCA's anticircumvention prohibitions, we concluded that the allegations did not establish a violation of the law. In addition, the maintainer submitted a patch to the project addressing the allegations of infringement based on unit tests referencing copyrighted videos. Based on all of this, we reinstated the youtube-dl project and will be providing options for reinstatement to all of its forks.

So it was all because a unit test mentioned several certain videos which happened to be copyrighted by someone who was offended their link was used in a test case? And the patch changed the test case video links to some that would not cause problems in the future? And that was used to stretch this into a circumvention device claim?

It is interesting that GitHub is taking this stand. GitHub is o1wned by Microsoft.


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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 17 2020, @05:31AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 17 2020, @05:31AM (#1078147)

    GitHub is o1wned[sic] o1nked by Microsoft.

    FTFY