Why is Sony going after local queer pop act's homemade video? (Updated: Sony acknowledges error after NOW's queries)
Some of you probably remember that cute video for All Yr Songs that became a summer Youtube hit for local queer pop act Diamond
That’s right – for some unfathomable reason, Sony BMG has decided that the homemade video infringes on their copyright, despite the lack of samples or stolen footage.
“We’ve filed a counter claim but are still waiting to hear anything official from the Sony camp,” explains a bewildered John O’Regan. “Hopefully as the news spreads they’ll be pressured to explain their side of the story. But Youtube is basically doing their bidding at this point.”
Was this just an administrative error on the label’s part? Or is there some visual element that director Colin Medley snuck in that we’ve missed? And shouldn’t the complainant have to give some kind of reason for going after them?
So far no one at Sony BMG has been able to answer our questions, but hopefully the mystery will be cleared up soon.
In the meantime, you can catch Diamond Rings playing tonight (December 10) at a new Kensington Market loft space called Double Double Land (209 Augusta).[rssbreak]
You can still watch it here:
Update One: Diamond Rings statement
First off, thanks to everyone who has shown such sincere and impassioned support for both Colin and in response to our recent music video saga. It means so much to both of us to know that you’ve got our back!
The good news (sort of) is that the music video for “All Yr Songs” is now back up and running on Youtube. However, we still haven’t received anything in the way of official word from either Sony BMG or Youtube which means we still don’t know (and may never know) why exactly it was removed in the first place.
Either way, it’s a bit spooky to realize how much power these international conglomerates can wield out there on the Wild World Wide Web. That’s quadruple-double-you-dot if we’re keeping score, BTW. But seriously, for something like our homemade video project to get snatched out of thin air, what’s next? Protect ya necks, kids! Stay vigilant! If we hadn’t had such great support from each and every one of you, who knows how long it might have taken to get our work back online. So thank you again.
Anyhow, we’re doing our best to get some information (or maybe an apology in the form of those signed Beyonce vinyls we were talking about earlier) out of Sony BMG, and you’ll all be the first to know once we hear anything.
Until then, stay safe and enjoy the falling snow.
Update Two: Sony apologizes
We’ve finally heard back from Sony BMG, and it turns out that we were right in assuming that this was an administrative error. According to our sources, a computer program mistakenly correlated the Diamond Rings video with Sony Music artist Chipmunk’s song Diamond Rings (you didn’t really think they had humans monitoring every uploaded Youtube video, did you?). What’s particularly interesting to us is that Sony BMG credits our repeated inquiries on the subject as the reason they looked into it and discovered the embarrassing error. Score one point for the power of the press.
While we’re glad that the record label has since made amends, we can’t help but wonder if maybe they should be required to have a human double check possible copyright infringements before they call in the lawyers in the first place.