Redlasso Receives Cease and Desist Letter From NBC, CBS, Fox Over Copyrighted Clips

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Redlasso Receives Cease and Desist LetterRedlasso is a website which offers bloggers and site administrators the chance to embed video clips from TV shows, news programmes and sports events minutes or hours after they air on network television.

The site is currently in beta, and only open to about 18,000 users, but that hasn’t stopped the shit hitting the fan as the company today received a cease and desist letter from NBC, CBS and Fox over the copyrighted clips it is offering.

The letter, leaked by Silicon Alley Insider, claims that Redlasso has broken state and federal laws while causing the companies “serious and irreparable harm.” The companies are demanding an immediate ceasing of all the copyright infringements.

Fair Use?

Up to now, while Redlasso has admitted not having deals with any of the networks, it was working towards them. It also claimed that the clips being shared were covered under the Fair Use clause.

The service is free, with revenue from advertising being split between the company and the producers and owners of the content. Redlasso now has until May 29th to respond to the letter.

Redlasso Responds

What’s strange is that the service has just been covered on Techcrunch, who gave a thumbs-up to the concept. Unfortunately, throughout the interview, Redlasso never once mentioned the cease and desist letter.

In a statement Redlasso said:

“We believe that curtailing distribution through the Redlasso platform only exacerbates a flawed distribution model. We hope to develop mutually beneficially partnerships with the world’s major media companies, including many of those we’ve heard from today.”

A Question Of Control

The problem is that while companies such as NBC and Fox are slowly but surely venturing on to the Web and offering their shows, they still want to be ultimately in control of what is offered, and when through services such as Hulu.

As we’ve already seen with the $1 billion copyright infringement lawsuit brought by Viacom against Google and YouTube, companies will go to any lengths to protect their copyrighted content.

Time To Go Legit

While Redlasso may have been a brilliant service, and one which if legitimate would have proved massively successful, by playing with the big boys, and dismissing the need for copyright deals, it has been badly burned.

I really hope the company now puts its house in order, fights to get those much needed deals in place, and becomes the legal service that many bloggers have been crying out for.