Thursday, February 11, 2010

Bloggers and music fans take note - Google is on a purging rampage.

This morning on Pitchfork, I read an alarming story regarding the recent and heightened spate of "blogspot" music blog "take downs." Blogger, which is owned by Google, has the right to literally eviscerate any blog that hosts copyrighted material, or material that is perceived to be copyrighted. Is Google's decision to shut down any given music blog arbitrary? Not exactly. Before such drastic action is taken, Google/blogger is initially notified by a DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) complaint presented by a music artist or the record company (indie or major) representing them. From there, Blogger temporarily suspends the post(s) in question and informs the blogger of the DMCA complaint. The real sting comes when a number of DMCA complaints for any given blog accumulates and Google decides to remove the blog from the web in it's entirety without any warning, and with ZERO storage or retention of the data contained therein - all in an instant. The curator of a blog removed under these circumstances has no recourse whatsoever. As a recent article on the Daily Swarm illustrates, Google's policy is guilty until proven innocent.

I'm as vulnerable as anyone. I would like to reiterate the disclaimer in my Blogger profile. If you're an artist (or an official representative thereof) who's music appears on this site, and you would like something removed, please email me directly PRONTO, and I will address any concerns as soon as possible. For the record, since beginning Wilfully Obscure in the spring of 2007, I have only received two DMCA removal requests.

In the future, I will be especially cautious about what I share on these pages, particularly if it is commercially available from an online retailer (like Amazon), iTunes, or similar digital music vendors. More to follow.

10 comments:

Mike said...

Rather than censor your blog for fear of what google might do, why not just move to a different provider?

Being 'careful what you post' is no good if google decide you aren't careful enough - your blog deleted and no comeback.

peter said...

sorry guys, when you use blogger, blogger OWNS your content, read their rules. They have all the right to shut you down.

Your only change for survival... your own domain... and NO wordpress, they're worse. I've been saying this in other blogs too, but everyone says.. too expensive... sit cheap, pay double. Sorry, I hope this blog stays... it's one of the few really good ones.

peter said...
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Tone and Wave said...

It really comes down to REPEATED complaints and, even then, Google requires that the 'plaintiff' prove he has a right to complain.

I have a friend that is very much into current pop music and the blogs that they frequent have already received these take down notices. These blogs disappear for a few weeks and then are back up and running.
This Google "crackdown" is nothing new. It's been going on for a couple of years now.

Keep doing what you're doing until they shut you down. Then do it again.

spavid said...

Moving to my own domain would be ideal, but wouldn't I have to be fluent in HTML (which I'm not) to create any content? If there's any way around this by all means let me know.

knownote said...

Some say wordpress is worse, but what I've done is a "just in case" scenario for my blogs. I've set up a wordpress page and imported all my posts there and just not made the blog public. So if they take down a blogspot blog, I've still got all the content archived and I can use it to start again. I don't necessarily plan to use wordpress as a public blog, but the content will still be there for me when I want to start something else.

Mal said...

Blogspot is great as long as you're offering legal, insightful, useful content.

Mike said...

Why not move to to baywords blog : http://baywords.com/

They won't censor you or shut you down for posting links.

knownote said...

Baywords looks like Wordpress to me....considering when you sign up it directs you to a word press login!

todd said...

Slow on the uptake but just want to thank you for all you do. I expect this makes an often thankless endeavor all the more thankless.