YouTube Terminates Top Indian News Network For Infringement

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ZeeNews, which claims to be India’s largest news network with 140 million viewers, has this morning received the ultimate punishment from YouTube. The network's account has been terminated following "multiple third-party notifications of copyright infringement" and that could mean there's no hope of a recovery.

youtubesadsmallWhile many people get away with uploading infringing content to YouTube, the site’s ContentID system ensures that content belonging to many of the world’s leading entertainment companies gets spotted when it’s uploaded by an unauthorized third-party.

Unofficial uploads can also be subjected to a DMCA-style complaint, whereby rightsholders inform YouTube that content is illicit and should be removed. Mistakes do get made, so content uploaders get a chance to issue a counter-notice in dispute. The mechanism is far from perfect though, with the system weighted in favor of rightsholders with the “little guy” struggling to make his voice heard.

While those uploading pirated TV shows and movies have little to complain about when a “strike” is placed against their YouTube account, legitimate companies can also be subjected to the same kinds of complaints.

This morning a leading Indian news network is waking up to that reality and a pretty big headache after multiple strikes were lodged against its YouTube account. Multiple strikes are very bad, as the message from YouTube below illustrates.

ZeeNews

ZeeNews appears to be a decent sized player in the Indian market, operating via zeenews.india.com, a sub-domain of the prestigious India.com. Its Twitter account has 457,000 followers and its Facebook page 2.6 million likes. Overall, ZeeNews claims 140 million viewers across ten channels and the title of “India’s Largest News Network”. It’s owned by Zee Media Corporation Ltd.

The precise nature of the complaints against the channel aren’t clear. The notice published by YouTube cites multiple complaints including those from “TF1” and “Wizcraft”. TF1 could be the French national TV channel of the same name and Wizcraft might possibly relate to an Indian branding company – TorrentFreak is awaiting responses from both.

Meanwhile, ZeeNews’ YouTube account remains not merely suspended, but terminated. In most circumstances that means there is no chance of the account being put back online, but given ZeeNews’ prominence it may be able to deal with YouTube, especially if there has been some kind of error.

Emails to the contact addresses listed by ZeeNews are currently bouncing, but we’ll persevere.

Update June 25: The YouTube channel is back.

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