YouTube “unable to accept” my counter-notification

Regular readers may recall that a video segment of my ROFLCon presentation was removed from YouTube based on a copyright claim by the owners of the song “Crank Dat (Soulja Boy).”

Per DMCA, I challenged this claim using the Chilling Effects counter-notification tool.

Today, I received an email stating the follow:

since the identification of the claimed content was automated, we are unable to accept your counter-notification at this time

Can anyone explain this to me?

This is my response:

Date: Fri, 16 Jan 2009 12:23:38 -0500
From: “Kevin Driscoll”
To: “Copyright Service”
Subject: Re: [#382716276] Mistaken removal

Dear Harry,

I am not a lawyer so you will have to forgive my ignorance to the
nuances of your copyright policy. From my perspective, an automated
identification seems much more susceptible to error than one made by a

I am deeply troubled that you will not accept my counter-notification.

Please advise on how I may challenge this error and have my video restored.


Kevin Driscoll

On Fri, Jan 16, 2009 at 12:01 AM, Copyright Service
> Dear Kevin,
> Thank you for your counter-notification. Your video has been identified by
> YouTube’s Video Identification system as containing content owned by
> Universal Music Group. In this case, however, since the identification of
> the claimed content was automated, we are unable to accept your
> counter-notification at this time. Rest assured that your account has not
> been penalized in cases of automated identification.
> Please see our recent blog post regarding this topic for more information:
> We’re glad you take copyright laws seriously – YouTube does too. In
> general, you must be certain that your video does not infringe someone
> else’s copyright before you upload it to our site. We cannot make this
> determination for you, it’s your responsibility to know the rules, but we
> suggest you refer to our Copyright Tips at
>, where we’ve provided some
> guidelines and links to help you determine whether your video infringes
> someone else’s copyright.
> Sincerely,
> Harry
> The YouTube Team
> Original Message Follows:
> ————————
> From: “Kevin Driscoll”
> Subject: Mistaken removal
> Date: Wed, 31 Dec 2008 00:14:05 -0500
>> Dear YouTube,
>> I have a good faith belief that a video I created was mistakenly
>> disabled on November 24, 2008. You will find further detail in the
>> attached letter.
>> Sincerely,
>> Kevin Driscoll

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30 Responses to “YouTube “unable to accept” my counter-notification”

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  2. Daniel Howard Says:

    Wow. Your web page’s tab caught my eye because the favicon is animated! Way to encourage me to leave a snide comment and then close the tab without bothering with the content. :/


  3. Anonymous Says:

    E-mail Soulja Boy and CC to his producers directly. Don’t just make a video reply that he wouldn’t see unless he happened to stumble across it.

  4. dizzyjosh Says:

    i wonder if the train of thought is that “because it’s automated, it’s error-proof”? If that’s the case, it’s pretty clear-cut and remarkable example of how code can embody an interpretation of a law (in this case, copyright without fair use) and thus ideology.


  5. Kevin Says:

    my suspicion is that the volume of claims was so high as to be unmanageable by YouTube. unfortunately, as the Lenz v. Universal indicates, the claimant is responsible for determining fair use BEFORE filing. if it turns out that they are submitting claims willy-nilly (as is certainly true), they may be liable for not meeting the “good faith” requirement written into the DMCA.

    when i am denied the opportunity to file a counter-claim, the balance between monopoly and fair use in copyright is destroyed and First Amendment rights are in jeopardy.

  6. todo mundo » Blog Archive » Concise notes on Fair Use in YouTube Says:

    [...] leaves little room for human intellect to confront and interrogate these delicious details. When I filed a counter-claim for one of my own disabled videos, I learned that YouTube no longer evaluates the accuracy of [...]

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