Shots have been fired over the rampant abuse of Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) takedown notices that, for too long, have flown around YouTube with wild abandon and cost more than a few vloggers their livelihood. While YouTube has apparently moved to change their "always agree with the guy filing" policy, many content creators have still been royally screwed.
One channel that's seen more than one false takedown notice is The Bible Reloaded, an athist bible study/satire vlog starring Hugo and Jake, two straight men (allegedly) fans love to imagine as lovers. For them, the Christian filmmakers, The Christiano Film Group (5 and 2 Pictures) have pretty much become archnemisises after multiple copyright infringements were filed for their fair use of stills and dialogue during their Atheists Watch film reviews. It all culminated in outright lies that even YouTube saw through and now Hugo and Jake have filed a lawsuit against the film group.
As we all know, lawsuits can get very expensive so the pair has set up a GoFundMe campaign to raise the needed cash with a goal of $100,000. They've succeeded in raising $82,412 as if the time of this writing, which is good but still $17,588 shy of what they need.
Now, you might be thinking oh, what do I care if they lose? and that's a fair question to ask if you don't understand the severity of their lawsuit. See, the film group is not only sending out false takedown notices but specifically targeted The Bible Reloaded over their negative reviews of their films. That's a company abusing the law to stifle commentary they don't like. That's illegal. And if the Christiano Film Group manages to win (by outspending THR) that would set bed precedent.
Even if you don't make vlogs, you could be affected by a THR loss. Imagine a company forcing you to remove a two-star review from your own blog by claiming you're infringing on their copyright by posting the cover of the book you hated. If this case goes badly, your freedom of speech could be impaired because the CEO of some corporation uses the same underhanded tactics to shut out you view and a dismissal or finding for the defendant could make it nearly impossible for you to fight back all because you followed the law and relied on fair use to protect you and your work.
Still think this has nothing to do with you?
Even if you don't agree with their opinions or views, understand that what happens with them will have far reaching consequences. So consider donating and if you can't, share the link everywhere you can as much as you can. Also, if you have a YouTube account, upload the two videos below to your channel; Hugo and Jake have given their explicit permission to do so (as long as you include the GoFundMe Link) in an effort to get the word out as far and wide as possible (just watch the videos for confirmation).
Don't let some company dictate what rights you do and do not have. Help The Bible Reloaded fight back against this abuse of law and show others like The Christiano Film Group that we will not sit idly by while our rights are threatened by baseless accusations.
The Bible Reloaded's Lawsuit Announcement
The Bible Reloaded's Lawsuit Update
If you value your ability to give your opinion freely and without the threat of legal action - even a false claim will eat up time and money - show your support for this worthwhile campaign and make the world safer for all reviewers.