Bungie sues Destiny YouTuber for sowing chaos with fake copyright strike

Bungie has sued destiny The player who allegedly filed dozens of fake copyright strikes in his name. lawsuit, covered by gamepostSays California YouTube creator Nick Minor turned a single Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) removal notice into 96 fraudulent claims against other YouTubers.

The complaint claimed that Bungie “brand protection” contractor CSC Global sent Minor a valid copyright notice in December 2021, asking him to remove the music from the soundtrack. destiny Expansion The Taken King, The minor allegedly responded by creating a Gmail account that mimicked CSC and then filing similar requests with a bevy of other YouTube accounts — even hitting an official Bungie account. He identified himself as a CSC representative and sought to remove the video from the accounts or face a YouTube copyright strike.

Meanwhile, under his YouTube alias Lord Nazo, Minor apparently ran what Bungie called a “disinformation” campaign against the studio. It claims it spread reports about massive copyright attacks, blamed Bungie for overly aggressive enforcement, and distributed a “manifesto” designed to “sow confusion” on the validity of all Bungie DMCA requests. ” was. (In an editorial aside, it says that the manifesto reads “a hackneyed ‘look what you did to me’ letter from a serial killer in a bad novel.”) It quotes destiny Community members described the removals as “heartbreaking” and “horrifying,” saying that the notices – which could lead to account deletions, if repeated – made them afraid to post more videos.

“Ninety-nine times, Minor sent a DMCA takedown notice on Bungie’s behalf, identifying himself as Bungie’s ‘brand protection’ seller to instruct YouTube to instruct innocent creators to remove them. fate 2 video,” the complaint says. “The destiny The community was bewildered and upset, believing that Bungie had reneged on its promise to allow players to create their own streaming community and YouTube channel. fate 2 subject.” Destiny publicly denied being behind the incident in March, and published guidelines to clarify when it would request a takedown, saying it would “broaden our boundaries as a business.” Would like to clarify.”

The controversy gained coverage in sports media, and Bungie said in March that it was investigating the issue. According to the complaint, it identified the miner by linking dots between different email addresses that he used during the massive campaign. It claims that the miner ran the operation as a retaliation for the original removal request, and is seeking financial damages for defamation, filing false DMCA notices, and – somewhat ironically – copyright infringement.

Beyond Miner’s personal actions, Bungie suggests he exploited the weaknesses of YouTube’s reporting system. For example, it says it was easily able to impersonate a CSC employee, because YouTube requires all reports to come through a Gmail account — not a company domain that a content creator can verify. could. Google’s system allows “anyone claiming to represent the rights holder for the purposes of issuing removals, without any actual safeguards against fraud,” complains Bungie.

More broadly, though, Miner’s campaign touts the status of copyright law as a powerful, controversial weapon that can sway YouTubers (and other Internet content creators) with little warning and painful consequences. Other “copystrike” senders have used the system to extort channels for ransom or censor news, and studios such as Nintendo have imposed heavy copyright restrictions on their games in the past. Minor apparently went just one step further – weaponizing the backlash to the DMCA itself.

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