Surprise, Surprise – Viacom Appeals YouTube Copyright Infringement Lawsuit Ruling

1 min read

Court GavelCan this actually be classed as news? Let’s face it, Viacom was always going to appeal the decision in the YouTube copyright infringement lawsuit which ended in June. Because it lost. And that’s not right, surely.

A Brief History Lesson

Viacom first realized it had a serious problem with YouTube in 2005, even before Google acquired the site for $1.65 billion. But it didn’t take serious action until that deal went through.

In March 2007, Viacom launched a lawsuit worth $1 billion, with this incredible figure arrived at due to the 63,000 alleged instances of copyright infringement.

It then took three years for the two sides to build their cases, with everything coming to a head in June of this year when Google’s motion for summary judgment in its favor was granted.

YouTube Wins, Viacom Appeals

So, YouTube/Google effectively won the case, and Viacom really wasn’t happy. It immediately pledged to appeal, describing the decision as “fundamentally flawed and contrary to the language of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, the intent of Congress, and the views of the Supreme Court as expressed in its most recent decisions.”

That appeal has taken shape today, just a few weeks after the judge ruled in YouTube’s favor. A court filing shows Viacom made the appeal to the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York.

Viacom remains confident it is in the right and will win the appeal. Meanwhile, YouTube insists the case is over and it has been shown to be safeguarded by the DMCA (Digital Millenium Copyright Act).

Third-party legal experts are siding with YouTube on this one, suggesting the original decision will likely be affirmed. Which will surely, if it happens, kill off this lawsuit once and for all.


The result of this case is of the utmost importance. The judge’s ruling so far suggests Web companies which stick to the letter of the DMCA are safe from being sued.

If the ruling is reversed via this appeal process then it puts content creators and owners at an extreme advantage. Some would say an unfair advantage.

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