Michael Savage’s motion to be dismissed as a defendant in Brave New Films’ wrongful DMCA takedown lawsuit was denied by Judge Illston on April 15. As explained in earlier posts, Original Talk Radio Network, the national syndicator of Savage’s radio show, sent a takedown notice to YouTube demanding that YouTube remove BNF’s video "Michael Savage Hates Muslims." BNF’s video uses audio clips of The Michael Savage Show to criticize Savage’s overtly hostile, anti-Muslim views.
In his motion, Savage argued that OTRN didn't have the authority to speak for him and therefore he couldn’t be held liable for the wrongful takedown notice. The Court disagreed and held that BNF’s complaint adequately alleged that OTRN ostensibly acted as Savage’s agent when it sent the takedown to YouTube. Judge Illston pointed out that OTRN’s letter said that it was sent on behalf of the copyright owner of the Michael Savage Show. Records show that Michael Savage is the copyright owner of the broadcast BNF excerpted in its video.
The Court also rejected Savage’s arguments that the letter wasn’t technically a takedown notice under the DMCA, holding that it was enough that OTRN’s letter stated under penalty of perjury that the information in it was accurate and that YouTube had posted copyrighted material without authorization.
A copy of the Order is attached.