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Viacom And Google's Youtube Battle Could Make Copy/Paste Illegal

Google has hit back at Media company Viacom over a $1 billion lawsuit against online video star, Youtube and claimed that the lawsuit could endanger internet freedom.

Viacom, the owner of Paramount Comedy and Nickelodeon TV channels, threatened Google since last year over copyright material that the search giant allowed on Youtube much to the chagrin of copyright owners.

According to Viacom own research, more than 150,000 copyright clips on Youtube including the award winning documentary "An Inconvenient Truth", had been viewed more than 1.5 billion times.

Google, Viacom continues, has done little or nothing to stop Youtube users from abusing the service and posting copyright material but the Search giant responded that it has "goes far beyond its legal obligations in assisting content owners to protect their works".

Youtube already has a number of features that allow content publishers to take down illegal content although a perfect solution that would check weed out pirated videos has yet to be unveiled.

Some, like Nick Farrell of the Inquirer, believe that the outcome of the lawsuit could have deep implications for companies like Google which do not create content and merely transform it into meaningful information.

As for Youtube, it is yet again proving that global popularity can bring unwanted responsibilities far beyond core competencies.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.