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Viacom and Judge Louis L. Stanton Rob YouTube Users of Privacy



On Thursday July 3rd, U.S. District Court Judge Louis L. Stanton forced YouTube to give Viacom -- which owns shows like "The Daily Show", and "The Colbert Report" -- records that show what videos you and I have been watching.

Here in this video , I explain that the implications are dangerous and could help, for example, the Chinese Government find and kill Tibetan protesters. In this, a private company could purchase the data from Viacom and then resell it to the Chinese Government.

The Chinese Government could use the IP address information to find the general location of Tibetan protesters, go to their areas, and kill them. That's a possible scenario.

I considered the court's "restriction" on use of the material by Viacom. But that's the problem: the block is on how the data is used -- there's no specific prohibition of the sale of the information.

The reason for all of these actions, if you've not followed the story is that Viacom has sued YouTube for allegations of copywrite infringement. Viacom lost on the majority of motions, but the one that's sticking asks for YouTube to essentially share records of what videos you and I have been watching, and that includes IP adresses.

I can't see the need for the data. Viacom claims that they wish to learn if audience views to a Viacom show on YouTube are greater than that for amateur shows like LonelyGirl15. They don't need all of that information to see that LonelyGirl15 has a larger audience traffic than "The Colbert Report" on YouTube.

You can complain about this decision. In the video, and here, I give the contact information for Judge Stanton and his Law Clerk, Samson Enzer.

The contact info is this: Phone number for Judge Stanton: 212-805-0252 and the fax is 212-805-0359. Mr. Enzer is on Linkedin and Facebook. You can contact him directly from this blog post.
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