Topics

Copyright

John Brawley
 

Hi all. Just wanted to open this up for discussion, see if any others have faced this...

I just got a trailer for a show I shot taken down from vimeo with a DMCA notice. First time this has happened to me. The email says I get three notices and then Vimeo deletes my account.

When you attempt to dispute it, you don’t really get many options. You can get to claim they made a mistake, or that it’s mis-identified. There’s not really room to note that you’re the originator of the images in question and they’re being used for personal portfolio use only. (They’re not downloadable so I’m not re-distributing)

So what gives ? I have a standard point in my deal memo that allows me use of the show for showreel and portfolio purposes. But you can’t get to present that seemingly. AND you have to consent to having it being determined by DMCA alone if you file a counter claim with them (which I’ve done).

Now it is a trailer. It was made by someone downstream of the studio and I guess that’s the argument that it’s a breach of copyright, but it’s so damn hard to actually get a hold of clips for showreel (despite the aforementioned deal memo notes) that a trailer seems the easiest and only way to present and example of my work. Every time I go back to the studio all they offer me is massively watermarked DVD’s (not files) that are no use for awards entry or showreel use and you can’t convince them to do it any other way.

All of the work in the trailer is my work. It’s for personal portfolio use and not being re-distributed or torrented.

This isn’t workable. It’s stuff like this and other dumb DRM stuff like region codes that get in the way of legit usage and penalise those that do the right thing.

Anyone else got good solutions for this ?

JB

John Brawley
Cinematographer
The Resident “Series 2”

Matthew Clark
 

John-

Maybe a work around is to recut the trailer, change the music or otherwise modify it enough so it is unique to you and your application.  Of course, using music that you’ve licensed or own.  Seems like if you can modify it just enough, you can make it “your own.”  I know it is simple to suggest but maybe a time consuming fix, but it could be valuable.

Curious to know how this will unfold.  Good luck.

Matthew J. Clark
Director/DP 
Seattle, WA
www.StraightEIGHTFilms.com

Will Montgomery
 

I just received a similar notice from Vimeo for a corporate video that had legally purchased stock music attached but the video was from almost 10 years ago so not sure how to fight it or if it is worth the time.

Will Montgomery
Producer/Director
Rubicon Marketing
Dallas, TX

On Jul 11, 2018, at 12:41 PM, Matthew Clark via Cml.News <str8films1=me.com@...> wrote:

John-

Maybe a work around is to recut the trailer, change the music or otherwise modify it enough so it is unique to you and your application.  Of course, using music that you’ve licensed or own.  Seems like if you can modify it just enough, you can make it “your own.”  I know it is simple to suggest but maybe a time consuming fix, but it could be valuable.

Curious to know how this will unfold.  Good luck.

Matthew J. Clark
Director/DP 
Seattle, WA
www.StraightEIGHTFilms.com

Jimmy Reynolds
 

Ive had a similar experience with a music video.  The annoying thing was that it was a pro bono gig.  I replied that as the footage was my property as they haven't paid for it that they are in breach of my copyright on their version.   Nothing helped and it got taken down.  The artist was such a pain it wasn't actually worth taking it further. and the song was shit. 

Id try make a scene on FB or twitter and get somebody's attention who's more than a button pusher.

Good luck

Jimmy

On Wed, 11 Jul 2018 at 19:41, Matthew Clark via Cml.News <str8films1=me.com@...> wrote:
John-

Maybe a work around is to recut the trailer, change the music or otherwise modify it enough so it is unique to you and your application.  Of course, using music that you’ve licensed or own.  Seems like if you can modify it just enough, you can make it “your own.”  I know it is simple to suggest but maybe a time consuming fix, but it could be valuable.

Curious to know how this will unfold.  Good luck.

Matthew J. Clark
Director/DP 
Seattle, WA
www.StraightEIGHTFilms.com

--
-Jimmy Reynolds
D.P. Filmmaker
+27 72 340 9668
jimmy@...
www.jimmyreynolds.co.za

Rachel Dunn
 



- Rachel D

     310-562-5779


On Jul 11, 2018, at 10:28 AM, John Brawley <john@...> wrote:

Hi all. Just wanted to open this up for discussion, see if any others have faced this...

I just got a trailer for a show I shot taken down from vimeo with a DMCA notice. First time this has happened to me. The email says I get three notices and then Vimeo deletes my account.

When you attempt to dispute it, you don’t really get many options. You can get to claim they made a mistake, or that it’s mis-identified. There’s not really room to note that you’re the originator of the images in question and they’re being used for personal portfolio use only. (They’re not downloadable so I’m not re-distributing)

So what gives ? I have a standard point in my deal memo that allows me use of the show for showreel and portfolio purposes. But you can’t get to present that seemingly. AND you have to consent to having it being determined by DMCA alone if you file a counter claim with them (which I’ve done).

Now it is a trailer. It was made by someone downstream of the studio and I guess that’s the argument that it’s a breach of copyright, but it’s so damn hard to actually get a hold of clips for showreel (despite the aforementioned deal memo notes) that a trailer seems the easiest and only way to present and example of my work. Every time I go back to the studio all they offer me is massively watermarked DVD’s (not files) that are no use for awards entry or showreel use and you can’t convince them to do it any other way.

All of the work in the trailer is my work. It’s for personal portfolio use and not being re-distributed or torrented.

This isn’t workable. It’s stuff like this and other dumb DRM stuff like region codes that get in the way of legit usage and penalise those that do the right thing.

Anyone else got good solutions for this ?

JB

John Brawley
Cinematographer
The Resident “Series 2”

Rachel Dunn
 

I believe you can do it with a private link.

As long as it's not public on Vimeo, you're cool.

I made everything private, and then used the embed code so that it can be viewed on my website. Seems to work ok.

I believe there was a court ruling a few years ago that makes the hosting site partially liable for any copyright infringement by its users, which is why Vimeo and YouTube are overly cautious.

It has something to do with the hosting site being considered a public broadcaster, and as long as they are just hosting and not "broadcasting" the content, they are cool.

In the case of an embedded private link, Vimeo hosts the content, but your website does the "broadcasting."

I suspect it's a grey area, but that seems be how it works at the moment. They can't regulate data on a server, only its dissemination to the public. You are too small to go after, but sites like Vimeo and YouTube aren't, so it is up to them to police their users.

As mentioned in another post, the other issue might be that you are using the trailers in their entirety, rather than extracting clips for a compilation reel. Vimeo is really good about identifying music, if that was included, and that what might be getting you bounced.

Finally about copyright - even though you originated the content, if it was a work for hire, you may no longer own the content, so that could be a weak argument in a dispute.

Best of luck with it.

- Rachel D

310-562-5779
www.racheldunn.com


On Jul 11, 2018, at 10:28 AM, John Brawley <john@...> wrote:

So what gives ? I have a standard point in my deal memo that allows me use of the show for showreel and portfolio purposes. But you can’t get to present that seemingly. AND you have to consent to having it being determined by DMCA alone if you file a counter claim with them (which I’ve done).

Steve Oakley
 

Its very likely if its an automated take down its the music. I”ve had this with stock music and YT, even on private links that were client previews. while the stock music company will white list the URL, doing that for every vers is crazy. so I quit using one particular stock music co over it even though they had good tracks.

if it was done by a person you need to figure out who, and deal directly with them if you can.

At least with YT you get an appeal on rejection where you can present documents like lic agreement. so I’d say just use YT instead.

Steve Oakley
DP / Editor / Colorist / VFX Artist
Madison & Milwaukee WI
920 544 2230

drew@...
 

I'm doing much more documentary editing these days, so I get to learn more about copyright and clearances... My two cents:

I'm no lawyer, but think what you're describing is exactly "redistribution". Being downloadable or not has nothing to do with it - you're making it available for viewing in a way that was not agreed-upon by the content owner. 

You're definitely strengthening "their" case by copying the entire piece - having the entire trailer up, with the studio's editing, GFX/VFX, and as others said, the music. It's much more than your own work. As annoying as it is, the studio's behavior in their communication actually confirms they don't want you to do what you're doing...

Your options:
- Link clients to where the trailer is officially available online
- Take individual shots from the trailer and cut them into your showreel (with your music)
- Host your own website, and put the videos there, instead of on YouTube/Vimeo. We're lazy these days and like them to handle the transcoding and streaming for us, but no one said you can't host your own video.


I feel uneasy about your "those who do the right thing" attitude. We work in content creation, and our income depends in part on copyright laws. So "this is dumb stuff" isn't a good argument because it's the same argument the kid who'd torrent your next film would use.

That said, rest assured I'm no MPAA prosecutor: It really is dumb that you can't present your deal memo to Vimeo. Maybe it was unjust to put the onus on the sites to make legal determination on each video the host... or unjust that YouTube makes billions off distributing content while treating it likes bytes instead of content... but I'm getting philosophical here. I do think our current copyright laws are flawed, ridiculous at times, and hinder artistic creation. I see it in my docu post work, where you ponder if you can show a shot of an old lady holding an old newspaper, without contacting the newspaper, paying them $2,000 for rights, tracking down the photojournalist, clearing it with him, and paying the clearance producers to do this 300 times over. And it all comes down to the legal system, which favors corporations and deep pockets over us small gals and guys. 

I also think the situation with music libraries is particularly dumb - this is an industry and service built to clear copyright issues. I haven't dealt with Vimeo takedown, but on YouTube your video gets taken down first, then you have to file a freetext form which I'm sure no one looks at, and basically click through 5 buttons of "I'm really really sure I have the rights to this". There should be a token or UUID system that when you purchase tracks, you get codes, and input them when you upload your video along with the title and description. Then if the music-crawling bot finds a match, it can instantly clear it.


Drew Lahat
Feature editor and stuff
Los Angeles, CA

John Brawley
 



On Jul 12, 2018, at 5:41 PM, drew@... wrote:

You're definitely strengthening "their" case by copying the entire piece - having the entire trailer up, with the studio's editing, GFX/VFX, and as others said, the music. It's much more than your own work. As annoying as it is, the studio's behavior in their communication actually confirms they don't want you to do what you're doing...

Your options:
- Link clients to where the trailer is officially available online

I fond they usually get’s taken down after a few months. Links get broken.

- Take individual shots from the trailer and cut them into your showreel (with your music)

Which means re-editing a trailer that has bugs and supers in it and it’s already poor quality.

- Host your own website, and put the videos there, instead of on YouTube/Vimeo. We're lazy these days and like them to handle the transcoding and streaming for us, but no one said you can't host your own video.

This is what I’m going to have to do again.  I used to do this, but found that for many in different parts of the world, the hosting / service speed performance from my own host wasn’t as reliable as Vimeo.

I found it hard to believe that because I’ve used a TRAILER, thats sole purpose is to ADVERTISE the show that I creatively had a great deal of input into every single episode and frame used in said trialer, is a crime.

This is personal portfolio use.  I’m not making money from it other than promoting my own creative effort which I have permission from the studio to do.


I feel uneasy about your "those who do the right thing" attitude. We work in content creation, and our income depends in part on copyright laws. So "this is dumb stuff" isn't a good argument because it's the same argument the kid who'd torrent your next film would use.


You might feel uneasy.  I’m pissed off.

Here’s a scenario that you guys that live in the US don’t often face, but as an Australian I have faced many times.

A few years ago a friend bought a special edition restored multi edition version of "All Quiet On The Western Front" for me as a gift from Amazon.

It included multiple DVD’s BlueRay and DVD, and a supposedly downloadable version.

Except no.  Because it was region coded.  And geo blocked. I couldn’t watch it on any of my players….nor was I allowed to download the downloadable version.  So what did they buy me ??

$75 dollars later, they’ve done the right thing, yet I can’t watch it.

This version of that title can’t be had in Australia because, frankly we’re in such a small market it’s not worth the cost of distribution to release it.  They’re going to sell 3 copies a year.  So it never gets released.

This happens all the time.  

Slightly obscure or hard to get titles that you WANT to pay for, and DO PAY FOR but you can’t actually watch. You’re penalised for doing the right thing.  Your only choice is not to buy the title at all if there isn’t a local version OR subvert DRM with a legitimate copy on a modified player or using a VPN. 

Even when you can find legitimate copies of content we pay in Australia at least a 30% premium for the SAME CONTENT.

The price on iTunes US is one level…Then you find a 30% more expensive price on Itunes AU (allowing for exchange rate).  All being served by the same company presumably from the same server farm somewhere not either in the US or AU and the same base costs….and Apple’s tax bill in Australia is a tiny tiny fraction of what it should be.  All their profits go offshore and they pay little to no tax.


So I can empathise with those that pirate because there are many barriers for those of us that do want to do the right thing, including, not being able to buy it at all.


I worked on a film that STRUGGLED to get distribution in Australia and yet turned into one of the most pirated / downloaded Australian films of 2013.  I think’s it’s BECAUSE it had no support from distribution.


Isn’t this a distribution problem ? If the distributors aren’t servicing the people that want this content, then consumers go around them.  If you actually made it EASY for people to pay for the content they want, I’m pretty sure a lot of the pirating would go away.  

I had to work on the second series of a US show and was trying to do my due diligence and watch the first season of this show while I was in Australia.  It couldn’t be done because it wasn’t available locally though any means.  And this was a major network show that had already aired nearly a year earlier. How would you watch it ?

In markets like Australia, we only officially get a fraction of the films and TV shows that many of you in the US get access to legitimately.   I’m sure it’s the same in other markets.

Streaming services has slowed down a lot of piracy from what I can see, but they tend to focus on contemporary and tentpole content. Many Australians now use a VPN but that is also subverting copyright.  

There has to be a better way.

JB



John Brawley
Currently - Atlanta Georgia
DP

Ted Langdell
 

Hi, John, 

You highlight a problem many folks in the US might not be aware of.  

Also, the pirating of the movie you mention seems to be an opportunity for an Australian entrepreneur to step in and handle distribution.  

RE: Your gift boxed-set:
Since you’re in the Atlanta area, why don’t you go out to Fry’s in the northeast suburbs, (or another store) and buy a US BluRay player and take it home with you?

Look for one that has a universal power supply, so that it handles 110/240VAC 50/60 Hz.  It’ll have HDMI.  Not sure whether a US BD Player will have a problem connecting to an HDMI TV in Australia... but it might be worth investigating. 

Maybe someone on CML has some info?

Hope this is helpful.

Ted Langdell

(530) 301-2931
Dictated into and Sent from my iPad which is solely responsible for weird language you may see.

On Jul 12, 2018, at 4:08 PM, John Brawley <john@...> wrote:

A few years ago a friend bought a special edition restored multi edition version of "All Quiet On The Western Front" for me as a gift from Amazon.

It included multiple DVD’s BlueRay and DVD, and a supposedly downloadable version.

Except no.  Because it was region coded.  And geo blocked. I couldn’t watch it on any of my players….nor was I allowed to download the downloadable version.  So what did they buy me ??

Stu Willis
 

I found it hard to believe that because I’ve used a TRAILER, thats sole purpose is to ADVERTISE the show that I creatively had a great deal of input into every single episode and frame used in said trialer, is a crime.

It probably isn't. You've got a contract to show that you are a valid license holder. 

But Vimeo aren't in the business of law enforcement, they're simply mitigating their risk. So for them the potential risk of allowing you to use your material isn't worth it, and your money probably means very little to them vs the potential legal costs. 

What I would suggest is restricting the video so it doesn't play on Vimeo (so it is private) but then embedding it on your own site.

---

As for region-encoding on BluRays (and Discs). Australian law is actually clear on the matter: they are not for protecting copyright. It is not illegal for you to circumvent that protection. https://www.copyright.org.au/ACC_Prod/ACC/Information_Sheets/Geo-blocking__VPNs___Copyright.aspx

Of course, it isn't illegal for the manufacturers to include it, so we end up with Geo-Restricted BluRays and.. I end up with a stack of Criterion BluRays that I can't play. Criterion is a good example of why an Australian distributor won't be able to step in. I'm sure Criterion would released region-free discs is their agreements allowed them - I'm sure their DVDs used by region free - so the Australian distributor will need to negotiate territorial rights and they probably won't have access to the same restored prints from Criterion. In fact, there were local Australian DVD releases from unrestored prints that looked woeful in comparison to the Criterion remasters.

However, when it comes to streaming, you are likely in breach of copyright when you use a VPN or a DNS to bypass geoblocking. Which, rather absurdly , make it as illegal as pirating — i.e. they're both copyright infringement — it is just harder to litigate for damages when you're actually paying for the content. 

FYI: JB, your name sake, JB HI FI sells multi region blu ray players from Laser...

PS: 100 Bloody Acres is hilarious. 

---
stuart willis
post

au: +61 407 916 450
skype: stuwillis

Chris Clarke
 

Hi all,

I had my Vimeo account suspended (and by default my website go blank!) due to 3 DMCA take down notices that came all within a day of each other. They were all for music videos for Sony Music Entertainment (SME) that I shot. I contacted the head commissioner who agreed to contact Vimeo and make the case but he pointed out that I was not allowed to put any promos I shot for SME on Vimeo or on my website! 

My deal memo that goes out from agents provides me with the right to be given and use a copy of the finished video/film for my promotion. Regarding music videos this memo is to the production company and not the record label which is why there have been a huge number of take down’s for directors, DoP’s, editors etc. on vimeo.

The background I’ve read is that Vimeo want to ultimately become a broadcaster and create their own content and so have started clamping down any uses of music that might be unlicensed. 

My solution has been to continue using Vimeo but all of my videos are now hidden and just used for embedding on my site. The real shame of this is that the community of Vimeo, that I initially joined up to, is disappearing. I used to get comments and private messages asking about how things were shot and sometimes enquiring about me working with them. This has now disappeared.

Thanks,
Chris

On 13 Jul 2018, at 00:23, Ted Langdell <tedlangdell@...> wrote:

Hi, John, 

You highlight a problem many folks in the US might not be aware of.  

Also, the pirating of the movie you mention seems to be an opportunity for an Australian entrepreneur to step in and handle distribution.  

RE: Your gift boxed-set:
Since you’re in the Atlanta area, why don’t you go out to Fry’s in the northeast suburbs, (or another store) and buy a US BluRay player and take it home with you?

Look for one that has a universal power supply, so that it handles 110/240VAC 50/60 Hz.  It’ll have HDMI.  Not sure whether a US BD Player will have a problem connecting to an HDMI TV in Australia... but it might be worth investigating. 

Maybe someone on CML has some info?

Hope this is helpful.

Ted Langdell

(530) 301-2931
Dictated into and Sent from my iPad which is solely responsible for weird language you may see.

On Jul 12, 2018, at 4:08 PM, John Brawley <john@...> wrote:

A few years ago a friend bought a special edition restored multi edition version of "All Quiet On The Western Front" for me as a gift from Amazon.

It included multiple DVD’s BlueRay and DVD, and a supposedly downloadable version.

Except no.  Because it was region coded.  And geo blocked. I couldn’t watch it on any of my players….nor was I allowed to download the downloadable version.  So what did they buy me ??

CHRISCLARKE
DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY


+447921 189758
www.chrisclarke.info



Geoff Boyle
 

I've had this fight many times with both YouTube and Vimeo the response that has worked every time is that under European law I am the cocreator and as such am allowed to use parts for self promotion.
Of course YouTube puts it up with ads on it which I don't get a penny of.
In the case of one video this 2.4 million plays...

Geoff

 

John Brawley writes:
Streaming services has slowed down a lot of piracy… but they tend to focus on contemporary and tentpole content. 
Many Australians now use a VPN but that is also subverting copyright.  
There has to be a better way.

Int’l copyright and US patent laws make up most of our legal dysfunctions.  

It won’t solve our problems now, but DRM might be where blockchain tech could potentially find a niche.
Decentralized and traveling along with encrypted media, unlocking it only when its permitted - ideally with region codes aside.  

Yes it would take an overhaul of region-based DRM, but the blockchain itself could be tied to your home region, no matter your ISP on-ramp (country)… or you’d be back to VPN-ing.  

mdp 


Mark Doering-Powell, ASC
LA based VPN 





Bob Kertesz
 

Yes it would take an overhaul of region-based DRM
Not that it helps much in the current discussion/situation, but as an
aside I believe the UHD DVD spec finally does away with all region coding.

-Bob

Bob Kertesz
BlueScreen LLC
Hollywood, California

DIT, Video Controller, and live compositor extraordinaire.

High quality images for more than four decades - whether you've wanted
them or not.©

* * * * * * * * * *

Fito Pardo AMC
 

I have experience in the issue, and has been crazy, I have a turn around way of skipping the legal stuff of Vimeo, FB and Youtube, It is not what The copyright inspectors want, but is what we as filmmakers need to do in order to get our stuff up with the music we want and the stuff we want.

The way they get you is by the audio, there is no way yet (that I know) that they get you by the images, (Getty an Google, had partnership since January 2018 and are looking for a way to do that possible, but they haven't had any luck in doing it that is a bummer for us, it will be sweet to get all the people who are using our images and charge for it, like the music and audio guys, but studios have been able to copyright their audio tracks and all services where you can upload video have those trackers.

Youtube did something, that I see very cool, they changed the algorithm and now you need 1000 followers in order to monetize, but if you are like me that don't have 1000 followers, then I don't need to monetize, but you do, you need to give permissions on ads on your videos so, if you have a video with music or audio that you don't own, you can give permits to that people to monetize with your video, is like an exchange of service, I use your track and thank you but you make money from my video, I see it fine for some of my videos, I don't mind, plus I get followers and maybe some day I get to the 1000 mark. 

Vimeo Facebook and Instagram don't have the monetize option, they should this world will be easier, they are stricter in there rules, I get it so if you still want your videos with your audio on those platforms, you must change the audio track, just change it a little bit, or do what I am doing in some cases, increase the voice of the actors and lower the music below -25 db or add noise (an LP noise loud will do) that works, they cant get the audio, Ive doing tests around it and some how it works.

I even mix music that sounds like but is not the same with the music I want to use (there is a general rule of using any music for 30 seconds, legally is OK, what I do I mix 20 secs of another track similar to that and I compose a new track with the commercial one I want to use so the audience I bring to my video will react) 

Not using the first 20 seconds of the song or audio track does work to, just play around you will nail it, probably not the first clip you upload, but do tests and one will do 

Facebook changed they way they give you the notice, now they don't block you but give you the choice of deleting the video with a statement of copyright infringement before posting it, then you need to delete it in order to not get blocked on fb, and do a new test until you get the right one. 

If you nail FB you Nail the rest, so that is the way to do the audio Copyright thing with a turn around. 

Fito Pardo AMC
 

John, I am from Mexico, I have been in that same scenario, there is a shortcut and how to see your film, but you have to do some things in your computer, you  need a computer (mac or pc, I do it with mac) then you need an app you can get online called "Handbrake" when inserting the DVD on your computer with out telling the zone of the disc and with Handbrake open do a extraction of the video from Handbrake, and when you have extracted, just put it in an USB stick and add it to your tv, you will be able to watch it where ever you are, with out zone barriers. 

Aasulv Wolf Austad, FNF
 

Solution is to host yourself and list yourself as admin, and use privacy services to force a manual process to contact you. I have yet to hear of anybody getting a manual takedown notice to their own website. With HTML5 things are a lot easier than they used to be. And of course: Code your website responsibly, i.e. search words should be for you and relevant words for your business, never for any of the products or brands or musicians in the videos on your site.

Sad fact is that Vimeo is no longer a solution for hosting our work! Maybe the private link and embed on website will work for a bit longer, but eventually that too will succumb to the illegal automated take down notices and Vimeo will go with the power over what's actually our legal right.

I have discussed this before with DPs who have full documented legal rights to show their work, music and all, and they have presented the documents to Vimeo to no avail. And even if they do get through, it takes time and that's time we can't afford.

As for other workarounds: Switch the music. That's how it's found. AFAIK copyright search is done by Audio, Still pics & Checksums. Much more efficient than doing pattern recognition of moving images.

Hope that helps a little.
--
Aasulv 'Wolf' Austad, FNF
DP, Altadena, California
http://wolfaustad.com

Adam Forslund
 

This problem people are bumping into is the "Safe Harbor" provisions of the DMCA.

https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/512

If you talk to a lawyer you should be able to figure out some prophylactic measures so that this kind of stuff doesn't happen in the future.

This is not legal advice.

Adam Forslund
Montana