Japanese content community targets YouTube

YouTube is getting backlash from its regionalized launches in June in the form of criticism from content creators in Japan. Even as YouTube parent Google Vice President David Eun was announcing content deals in Tokyo last week, content executives gathered to blast the service for copyright infringement, according to published reports. The Japanese version of YouTube is said to be the most popular of the new regionals, which also include Brazil, France, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Spain and the United Kingdom.

YouTube has traditionally relied on user-policing and take-down notices to prevent copyright infringement, a strategy that landed the company in court with Viacom, owner of all of those Comedy Central clips. A class action involving several European sports leagues is also building against YouTube with the recent inclusion of American helo-journalist Bob Tur, reportedly the first to file against the video-sharing site.

During a scheduling hearing held last month in U.S. District Court in New York, Google attorneys said digital fingerprinting would be implemented in September. The technology could be used to flag and reject copyright clips, but its efficacy is uncertain. The Japanese coalition is skeptical, and is pressing for tighter controls now.

For more:
- Robert Andrews covers the conflict at Forbes.com here
- Adario Strange of Wired's Epicenter blog suggests Japan enjoys the free advertising here
- Viacom vs. YouTube is succinctly explained in a clip from The Daily Show uploaded on YouTube here

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