Google has had a lot of trouble with YouTube since it was first purchased in 2006. It started with a lawsuit from Viacom and has progressed to RIAA and other content owners, all upset about their protected media being uploaded to the service without their permission. Google has made agreements with nearly everyone, allowing them to follow standard US Internet law, saying that they are not responsible for the content uploaded to their site, but are required to pull anything that is infringement.
Unfortunately for the company, that law does not exist everywhere. In Germany, for instance, a recent court loss states that Google is responsible for the content uploaded to their service, not the users. The royalty collection group, Gema, similar to our RIAA, is obviously very happy about this win. They believe that Google has never done enough to protect copyrighted material.
How did Google respond? Hit the break to find out.
Google seems to be a little confused about this loss. A spokesperson said,
Today's ruling confirms that YouTube as a hosting platform cannot be obliged to control the content of all videos uploaded to the site... We remain committed to finding a solution to the music licensing issue in Germany that will benefit artists, composers, authors, publishers and record labels, as well as the wider YouTube community.
It would appear that Google misinterpreted the court's ruling to be in their favor? That is all I can take away from that comment, as it seems to be the opposite of the actual ruling. As for remaining committed to finding a solution, my guess is that it will be business as usual. As we learned in China, Google is more likely to pull out of a country than to follow its laws.
Will Google install the software the Gema wants them to or will they continue to work on the premise of ignorance is bliss? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.