Renowned filmmaker Robert Greenwald created an excellent parody of the Colbert Report and posted it on YouTube. Viacom (the parent company of Comedy Central) detected the segments of the Colbert Report included (lawfully) in that parody, and delivered a takedown notice to YouTube, despite the fact Greenwald’s parody was a paradigm case of fair use. Together with the Electronic Frontier Foundation, we sued Viacom seeking a determination that Greenwald’s parody was fair use, and for wrongfully taking it down in violation of DMCA section 512(f). After we filed suit, Viacom conceded it should not have delivered the take down notice and agreed to withdraw its objections to the parody.
The Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School is a leader in the study of the law and policy around the Internet and other emerging technologies.