20th Century Fox Having Bad Reviews Pulled Off YouTube

Just when you think studios couldn’t act worse… they just keep on surprising you! I’ve just been notified by YouTube that 20th Century Fox has just filed a copyright infringement notice with them to have our review of the ass awful film “Reno 911: Miami” taken off their site and deleted.

And before you ask… yes… the review was a negative one.

It is curious that they are claiming copyright infringement. As most of you know, in our video reviews we will cut in clips from the trailers of the movies we’re discussing. Trailers that are made publicly available by the studios for anyone, anywhere to download at anytime. on top of that, according to Stanford’s website, “Fair Use” of material is covered under the category of “COMMENTARY AND CRITICISM”. The site states:

“If you are commenting upon or critiquing a copyrighted work-for instance, writing a book review — fair use principles allow you to reproduce some of the work to achieve your purposes. “

Let me repeat that I didn’t take clips from a pirated version of the movie… I used the clips, in a legitimate “fair use” exercise, from a source that the studio themselves made fully and publicly available to everyone. And yet they pulled my review of their terrible movie off of YouTube. Fox knows full well that this has nothing to do with copyright infringement.

The review is ancient history, and I could care less about it. But the principle here of a billion dollar studio using its legal department to have legitimate negative reviews of their movies taken off the internet is outrageous.

48 Comments, Comment or Ping

  1. Andrew

    Do what you did when Paramount pulled something like this. Write 20th Century Fox a letter tearing them a new one. Maybe the same thing that happened with that situation will happen here.

  2. Frankie J

    WOW thats some funny stuff although fox is still better that WB those guys are dicks BTW just wondering Can you tell me is their anyother way to listen to a commentary track for some reason it will not play for me? thanks

    Frankie J

  3. Brendan

    I also just ‘Stumbled Upon’ this page to so now it will start circulating. People have the right to know!

  4. Gavin Bollard

    Edit your review, remove the clips and replace them with non-animated kids drawings (stick figures) marked with the reason for Clip Removal and then stick your review back up.

    Don’t let them win when they’ve got such poor grounds.

  5. Clinky

    You may have a legal case against them. It’s just as illegal for them to claim ownership of your review, which you own and legally contains fair use clips, as it would be to post entire episodes of the Simpsons. The law that allows them to as for things they own to be removed does not allow them to fraudulently ask for the removal of things they don’t.

  6. DarkKinger

    You’re not the first. I have seen fan-made recut trailers getting taken off of Youtube in the past few weeks by 20th Century Fox. I think this is wrong for a studio to do that, especially focusing on bad reviews; freedom of speech, anyone?

  7. Pete

    I agree with Gavin Bollard above me, re-edit it and put some stick figures or add something in replace of the clips. With the back story this video will probably get more views than the original.

  8. Jim March

    You CAN sue the crap out of ‘em. Filng a false take-down notice under the DMCA is bad mojo.

    Around Oct. of 2003 Diebold Corp did a slew of take-down notices against sites critical of their electronic voting systems. Mine was one hit, but I filed a counter-notification under the DMCA that’s been cited as a “what to do” at least as drafted by a non-lawyer:


    Another of the people hit around the same time sued and won a $125,000 judgment, as in my case (and yours) where “fair use principles” were completely ignored. See also:


    Congrats. You just won the lottery. This isn’t a gray area situation, you have them by the BALLS. You can take them directly to court, as what they’ve done is an open and shut violation of Federal law.

    Jim March

  9. Uberto

    Fox is not the only bad guy here,would YouTube cut off their testicles and eat them if Fox (or anyone else) asked them to ?

  10. killa

    My advice and this has happened to me before is, resubmit the video and include in the discription of the video that it falls into the fair use catagory. Then if it happens again you are going to have a stronger case agaist youtube for removing the vid and FOX for sending a FALSE!! DMCA notice…

  11. Darren J Seeley

    Galvin and Pete have a great idea. The problem is, it wouldn’t work and Fox would still veto it. After all, I could have sworn ‘Reno :911″ was made with stick figure drawings. Or at least made out of cheap cardboard.

    The Seeler’s hypothesis:

    1) As far as Fox taking everything off YouTube, perhaps they want to focus on MySpace videos?

    2) Maybe Fox was owning up to that Reno 911 was an error and they want to clean up the mess, pretending like the film was never made…

    3) Has Gio reviewed other Fox films in a two minute video review? Are they taken down/on iTunes no more?

    4) Will Fox make amends to TMB by giving away swag from ‘Avp2′, perhaps a specially made Todd McFarlane doll of the (jk) homosexual Predalien?

    5) Will Fox make amends by showing up at next year’s Comic Con?

  12. max

    Time to get the EFF to take your case up and sue these pricks for violation of the DMCA. Abusive DMCA requests is a felony, and a corporation CAN be charged with the crime.

  13. TheCynic

    What of it?

    YouTube doesn’t have to adhere to copyright regulations. They can pull your stuff off at any time because they are not a publically owned website.

    Host your video on your own website, put up a Digg link to it, etc, and Bob’s your uncle. You might even get Boing Boing to cover it if you can provide a link and a story about Fox getting it taken down.

    Just to be clear, you are legally free to make a video like this, but YouTube is not legally obligated to host it for you.

  14. max

    Also, youtube has no say in it. If they don’t remove a DMCA request they lose their right to ’safe harbor’ which means everye asshole in the world can sue them. That being said, if companies like News Corp and Viacom continue to file illegal DMCA’s they will lose their right to file DMCA’s and youtube won’t have to listen to them. The process of removing clips will become harder and harder for the movie studios.

  15. samthurston

    Probably, you just got caught in a drag-net… the studios probably hired someone to search for their catalog of movies on youtube and DMCA anything that moved.

  16. darkbhudda

    They probably did a bombardment of DMCA takedown notices putting the onus on the injured party to prove they weren’t infringing on copyright. However the behaviour is illegal. Not that anyone has been punished for it. One day they’re going to do it to a politician or journalist and finally something will be done about it.

  17. Nit Picky

    I think you meant to say, you “couldn’t” care less about it. Saying you could care less means you care about it more than you maybe should.

  18. Viddy

    Fox is a horrible studio. I do think they are worse than WB. Fuck Rothman!

  19. joseph

    You sent a counter-notice to Youtube, right? They are obligated to honor the notice from the studio, and they are equally obligated to honor a counter-notice from you. Even if you had used clips from the actual movie it is fair use unless you used gratuitous chunks of it. I appreciate the fact that you’re sticking it to Fox here, but really it shouldn’t be a big deal.

  20. trog

    Put the review back up without the copyrighted bits in it, perhaps?

    At the end of the day this’ll (obviously) come down to a Fair Use debate. Fox actually charge to be able to use their clips - call them and ask for their “FEATURE AND SERIES LICENSING ENQUIRIES” sheet to get an idea on the price (the one I have which is a couple years old says its thousands of dollars per minute of footage).

  21. Bill Eyus

    The Digital Millennium Copyright Act provides for a different interpretation of fair use online, as compared to in other media. which changed net copyright in many ways. It reduces fair use rights.

    What is legal on TV or in print may not be legal online.

  22. gmk

    What do you expect from business?, its bottom line at all cost and to hell with ethics, morals and all thinks that are just right.

  23. wes

    just use your new-found corporate backing to set up your own video streaming system, thereby negating the need for youtube. bastards.

  24. jb

    They are in their legal rights to take down re-cut trailers unless the work is for for parody and even then the lack of additional material (like not even using a new voice over) is weak argument for fair use. But you are solid on criticism and can post your review on your site with a review of your review and link to your site on YouTube. Then if they send you a cease and desist you can tell them to kiss off. And lastly for people that have not read the Constitution - free speech is right but the protection of it is yours - all the Constitution (the first amendment really) does is protect you for Congress, not corporations.

  25. Louis

    I think you’re being wayyy too conspiracy-minded and, frankly, rather melodramatic. No one’s out to get you. Fox has probably never even heard of your blog. It was probably just a robot searching out a list of movie titles and you were accidentally tagged.

  26. ReallyEvilCanine

    Clinky is correct and jb is an idiot. Fair use includes commentary and criticism. The takedown notice was illegal and Fox is liable for perjury, a charge you can get your local DA to pursue instead of going after them in civil court.

  27. dredre

    Getting as much media exposure on this rediculous charge as possible would be if nothing else, entertaining for me.

  28. Robert(wolf)

    What the fuck? You can’t be serious? So you can’t put a bad review? BULLSHIT!
    So if you as the reviewer add clips from the trailers in, it’s copyright infringement! What if I upload a fox trailer to youtube from there offical site, is that copyright infringement?


  29. Phil Gee

    They do it because they can John, unfortunately. Youtube are an obedient lapdog of the corporations.

  30. PhoenixP3K

    It really falls into fair use, and if this video was targetted for this reason 20th Century Fox has morality issues.

  31. UKAndy616

    Didn’t you know, John?

    Copyright infingement is a major contributing factor of global warming.


  32. Scott

    That sucks man. I’ve had my brushes with Fox’s legal department and they’re a bunch of dicks.

    BTW it’s “couldn’t care less”, NOT “could care less” ;) The latter means you do care about it, but you mean you don’t care.

  33. Outraged

    Max, (#13) - you’re an idiot.

    Youtube -does- have a choice in the matter, and they would not lose any status by refusing an illegitimate request, assuming they were able to verify that was the case.

    “Safe Harbor” is all about due diligence, not the end result.

    As said above, why not post it to your own website, and stop relying an unreliable service like YouTube?

  34. Brendan

    Louis, if you think that Fox hasn’t heard of TMB than you’re crazily wrong. Corporations like Fox use web culture and viral marketing as a tool to advertise- which is why they are censoring YouTube in the first place- cause they know word of mouth can kill a product, I guess they didn’t forsee such a negative reaction to it.

    Example: Andy Milonakis does stupid ramblings on YouTube and somehow gets a show on MTV2 based on the amount of hits he got.

    And you really think film and tv corporations don’t closely monitor EVERYTHING that goes on related to their products and potential products on te web? Dead wrong.

  35. Babson

    There seems to be a lot of misinformed people about.

    There’s no need to do the whole thing again with stick figures.

    YouTube is required to take down video upon receipt of a notice. John can make his reply, and judging on past experience with fair use (see the Randi/Geller clips for example), his clip will go back up.

    If it can be demonstrated that the studio has acted in bad faith by issuing takedowns for content it should know is legal, John has the basis for a suit.

  36. Alex

    When a false DMCA notice is filed, you have the right to counter-sue and get damages awarded. Everythign is in your favor, so call your legal team and bust them down for a BILLION dollars, MINIMUM.

  37. J

    Just another example of Canadian piracy. When will you guys learn. :)

  38. A Corner Wino

    fuck them cocksuckers that film sucked and so do their lawyers go chase a injury case creeps ….i’ll piss in their wine next time they order one or i’ll rub myu cock on the glass they drink from….ha ha ah ha

  39. jesus is coming and he's pissed

    ahhh fuck 20th century fox they are a bunck of old gay closet queens who will drop to their knees to suck off a ten dollar bill….this movie sucks plain and simple so just don’t go see it and boycott 20th fox programs cause after all they ALL SUCK

  40. Dave Nofmeister

    Youtube is certainly big enough, with it’s own legal department, to challenge 20th Century Fox. They could pick up the challenge, talking about copyrights, freedom of speech, or whatever, and have a lot of positive free advertisement from this! No doubt Fox is legally on very thin ice as far as actually presuing a lawsuit.

    By the way….Reno 9/11 sucks anyway!

  41. Dude

    I guess the Fox lawyers will be working overtime this holiday to get rid of all of the reviews of Hitman. WHAT A STINKER!!!

  42. Jefferson Coulter

    If YouTube informed you that they were taking down your review because they recieved a DMCA takedown notice, then you should immediately send them a “putback” notice. Then, the burden will shift to 20th Century Fox to either file suit against you within 10 days or let the review go back up.

  43. Anon

    Why on earth would he want to do a completely useless, time-consuming lawsuit for something that didn’t exactly take him a lot of time to make?

    Seriously. Just let it be. Obviously, because the clips are covered by fair use, the review had every right to stay up-but YouTube can do whatever the hell it wants. It doesn’t even have to be taken down for Fox’s complains, it can be taken down for whatever the fuck YouTube wants to take it down for. Granted, it sucks that it was a bad review, but once you upload your videos to YouTube, even though it is your material, YouTube can take it down. Terminate it for no reason.

    Not everything has to be resolved with a lawsuit, especially when it’s not something that caused personal harm to those affected.

  44. Rob

    Is there a lawyer in the house???????

  45. Brendan

    Anon, it’s not as much personal harm as much as it is infringement on our rights that are guaranteed to us by both the constitution and laws like the fair use law. If we were to let every corporatation sensor us then we would pretty much be letting them dictate what we say and where we spend our money, that’s not really something I’m that willing to give up- how about you?

  46. jasmine

    Fox is wonderful studio it is better than the best


  47. what are you a pussy??

    what are you a pussy??
    just put it back up
    on a different site if you have to.
    you did nothing wrong so what are they gonna do about it??
    send it to me i don’t mind putting it on my youtube account or something.

    I mean big companies pull this shit all the time (kane&lynch any1?).
    they’re fuckin criminals destroying free speech and journalistic indepence like this!

    (note i’m dutch so it’s probably filled with grammar and spelling errors)

  48. toomy6

    my video family guy brian griffin in love was taken off of you tube for the same reason and it was just some clipes from an episode on a dvd that i bought with some music in the backround
    this is bull shit how was it copyrighting i didnt even get payed for it

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