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JOURNALISM IN THE AMERICAS Blog

YouTube, Vimeo remove documentary on Rafael Correa for alleged copyright infringement



The obstacles keep coming for the distribution of Colombian-American Santiago Villa's documentary on President Rafael Correa. According to the Ecuadorian NGO Fundamedios, YouTube and Vimeo took down the video after the company Ares Rights brought a lawsuit for copyright infringement.  

Fundamedios said the Spanish company Ares Rights, a group that protects authors' rights for its clients on the Internet, requested the removal of the documentary for supposedly containing "unauthorized images" taken in the state-run television station, Ecuador TV.

The distribution of the documentary has been riddled with accusations and censorship. Villa refused to broadcast the film on the U.S. television channel América TeVe after the network asked him to make changes in its presentation. The filmmaker called the edits censorship and alleged the Ecuadorian government pressured the station. Journalist Andrés Carrión was forced to end his radio program on Armónica after interviewing Santiago Villa. 

"Rafael Correa, portrait of the father of the nation," according to Villa, "uses the protagonists' own words to address topics like the FARC's financing of Rafael Correa's presidential campaign in 2006, [...] the persecution of social and indigenous leaders, the government's campaign to against freedom of expression and legal harassment by the presidential family's former security chief." According to Fundamedios, the documentary is only available for viewing on the Russian-based website www.smotri.com.



2 comments

 
Guest wrote 1 year 13 weeks ago

authors rights vs copyright infringement vs censorship?

Its a problem that is going to get worse unless the big guys (YouTube, Vimeo) have tighter controls for uploading. There will still be ways around it (chopping material up and slightly altering name) but copy-write issues will plague us for sometime. And nothing like pressure from Governments to make issues get adhered too. Try to being a lowly publisher and trying the same thing.

 
Gemma-Leigh Garner wrote 1 year 17 weeks ago

authors rights vs copyright infringement vs censorship?

I feel that video distribution sites like YouTube, and Vimeo have the right to remove anything they choose to remove. They are free services driven by advertisers so it just makes sense.

It's sad.. however that these great services for publishing new and information are the ones getting hit with the lawsuit versus the person who published the copyrighted content in the first place.

I know that this year, Google has had a record number of reports from (DMCA) The Digital Millennium Copyright Act to have content removed from their index.

It is interesting to think about the freedom of the press, an author's rights, copyright infringement and censorship and the future of journalism here in the US and the Internet.

~Gemma-Leigh

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