This afternoon I sent the following email to TVW President and CEO Greg Lane:
Subject: Bad Faith DMCA Takedown Notices
Date: November 2, 2009 2:08:55 PM PST
Dear Mr. Lane,
I am writing in regard to the takedown notices TVW recently issued to YouTube and Vimeo regarding my video “Suzie Huckabee,” in the hope that we both can avoid any unnecessary legal expense.
Under the terms of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), copyright holders are required to make a good faith effort to consider Fair Use before issuing a takedown notice. Judging from your public statements and actions regarding a Dow Constantine ad which similarly makes use of TVW video, and for which TVW also issued a DMCA takedown notice to YouTube, it is apparent that TVW understands that use of your clips in this limited manner merely violate your policy, not your copyright. I do not doubt that you believe that Constantine and I are “hiding behind fair use,” but that acknowledgment in itself clearly suggests that your DMCA takedown notices were not issued in good faith.
As such I respectfully ask TVW to remedy the situation as follows:
1) Promptly communicate to YouTube and Vimeo that your DMCA takedown notices were issued in error, and formally request that the video in question be restored.
2) Promise, in writing, that TVW will refrain from issuing similar DMCA takedown notices in the future, without first making a good faith effort to consider Fair Use, as required by law.
3) Issue a formal apology for misusing the provisions of the DMCA in your efforts to enforce your own non-binding copyright policy.
If all three of these steps are fulfilled, I will accept the issue as closed. Otherwise, considering how TVW has repeatedly harassed me with bad faith DMCA takedown notices — and considering the dangerous precedent your routine abuse of the DMCA has set — I will regrettably have little choice but to seek redress through the courts, so that this issue may be settled once and for all… and well in advance of the next election season.
“Politics as unusual.”