Jan 26

YouTube (and Netflix) monetize online piracy

tt0150662Need more evidence that Google’s YouTube earns income from pirates who upload (and monetize) films for which they don’t own the rights?  Well, here’s another example I found today (1/26/13).  This time it’s a YouTube user with the moniker “iWatchEpicMovies.”   The film in question (one of many the uploaded claimed by the user) is a 1998 Swedish film, released in the United States under the title “Show Me Love.” The original title in Swedish was “Fucking Amal.”

The film was uploaded to YouTube on January 23rd and claimed by the uploader, who asserted “ownership in the following countries: Worldwide.”  When you view the film on YouTube it’s monetized with advertising, meaning the uploader and YouTube earn money very view.  Not only is the pirated film monetized, but ironically,  one of the ads  superimposed over the screen is a Netflix ad.  So, in this case, Netflix is also benefiting from the presence of this pirated film on YouTube.  BTW, Netflix is no stranger to allowing its advertising to be promoted aside pirated movies.  I wrote about another recent example of this here.

FA Youtube online.024

Pirated film Monetized on YouTube by Google featuring Netflix Ads

Google/YouTube will, as always, claim that it’s the rights holder’s job to police YouTube and to request that infringing content be removed.  Of course, in the interim, Google’s happy to make money and Netflix is happy to attract new customers (and make money).

In another ironic twist to this pirated upload, the YouTube user posts this disclaimer “I do not claim copyrights.  For entertainment purposes only.”  Perhaps “iWatchEpicMovies” should rewrite it to clarify, and say:  “I do not claim copyrights, but I assert ownership (worldwide) for the purpose of making money off something I don’t own.”


This post first published on Vox Indie.