“[I]f the channel receives three hard strikes, we’re out,” wrote Courtney Kirchoff at “Louder with Crowder.” “We take strikes seriously. But this strike, from the looks of it, is completely invalid. That’s a polite way of saying it’s bulls***. Yet our stream was still removed from the largest free online streaming ‘platform’ in the world.”
The account apparently purported to represent Warner Brothers and issued a copyright claim, triggering YouTube to remove the stream.
“What we found out with simple searches is this ‘mbentkover’ (account) character has violated federal law (making false copyright claims) since 2018,” Kirchoff said, adding complaints about the account from other YouTubers.
In March, for example, Divyansh Gupta complained online, “My Youtube Channel is Striked by email@example.com and this guy 3 False Striked me on my Ben 10 gameplay Series saying it belongs to Warner Bros which is not true! PLEASE HELP @YouTube @YouTubeIndia I can’t afford to lose my channel & Videos.”
From your screenshot, it looks like you've already submitted a counter notification. This is best next step if you think the strikes were made in error. Our team will review this and forward it to the claimant. You can read more about it here: https://t.co/2stm64ZpdJ
— TeamYouTube (@TeamYouTube) March 9, 2020
Another YouTuber in 2018 posted: “[Does] Youtube really believe this name, [it’s] like something off The Simpsons firstname.lastname@example.org, gmail not an official domain. The video itself was NOT made or taken by ANY staff at the so called Warner Bros, so copyrite is false claim, this is a FAKE Claims [sic], by a Troll Joker.”
Do Youtube REally believe this name, its like something off The Simpsons email@example.com , gmail not an official domain.
The video itself was NOT made or taken by ANY staff at the so called Warner Bros , so copyrite is false claim, this is a FAKE Claims, by a Troll Joker pic.twitter.com/sBuYVfHFIi
— LONDON UK Video ℹ #StayAlert (@LondonHertsNews) August 2, 2018
Kirchoff railed at YouTube, chalking up the incident to either intentional negligence or utter YouTube incompetence.
Either YouTube “allows this bad actor to continue issuing false strikes against channels, thus putting those entire channels at risk,” she wrote, or “the biggest tech company in the world, YouTube, lacks the ability to stop a random fraud with a Gmail account from successfully abusing the system against the biggest conservative channel their platform has ever seen. And other smaller channels to boot.”
“Either way, not a good look for YouTube,” Kirchoff said.
Crowder’s team reached out to YouTube, and they received a response after the town hall was done.
“We’ve followed up with Bill directly as well, but for the group’s awareness, we’re processing the DMCA counter-notification that Bill submitted (details on how we process counter-notifications here), and you can live stream again,” YouTube said.
Kirchoff said the comment confirmed the claim was false. And though they were allowed to stream again post-town hall, she noted that “the damage had already been done. The stream was taken down from YouTube. Triggered by a fraud. A fraud who’s been at this for two years.”
“Where’s the justice for creators here?” posed Kirchoff. “How many other channels, which don’t have the legal resources Louder with Crowder does, deal with false copyright claims and strikes which might result in the loss of their channels? If this is how YouTube responds to claims, if this is how strikes are issued, how can YouTube claim to be a platform?”
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