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Friday, January 31, 2014

Appealing A Copyright / DMCA Violation

Occasionally, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, we see victims of Copyright / DMCA Violation action, asking how to get their blogs or posts restored.

In the past, many blog owners, who did not check their email carefully, or who had even setup Blogger accounts not based on actual email addresses, were frequently surprised by DMCA takedowns.

Owners of blogs subject to copyright violation action should see two effects.

  1. A large DMCA Complaint alert, at the top of the dashboard.
  2. Specific posts in violation will revert to Draft status, rather than being deleted.

Rather than having the entire blog, or individual posts, deleted (and having no idea which post(s) in the blog might be a problem), the offending posts can be found reasonably easily, in Draft status on the "Edit Posts" menu.

Note that team blog ownership may complicate visibility of the DMCA Complaint alert. And alternate blog deletion scenarios may be present, even with a blog cited for DMCA Violation.

Owners of blogs affected can research and appeal the violations. Copyright / DMCA complaints, sent by Google, are forwarded to the DMCA Complaints Clearinghouse, ChillingEffects (now called "Lumen"), automatically. The blog owners needing to see the details, and file an appeal, will find promptly updated details, by searching for their blog's URL at lumendatabase.org.

Appeals may be submitted using Google Help: Removing Content From Google.

  • Select "Blogger/BlogSpot".
  • Select "I have a legal issue that is not mentioned above".
  • Select "I would like to file a counter notice ...".
  • Select "Yes".

With the problem content saved as Draft, the blog owner is able to simply edit then republish the Draft, when convenient. If the content dispute is not resolved - or at least successfully appealed within ChillingEffects / Lumen - it's likely that the legal owner of the content will refile the DMCA complaint.

Blog owners who repeatedly publish problem content are subject to deletion of the blog, and later the Blogger account.

Dude, hit me with a comment!

Tito Dutta said...

Google abides by a country's legal procedure. So, if any site owner follows legal procedure and want to take a copyright violator to court, Google will disclose your details. It is at least theoretically possible. And if it happens it will be much worse than just a blog or post suspension.

"With the problem content saved as Draft, the blog owner is able to simply edit then republish the Draft, when convenient. If the content dispute is not resolved - or at least successfully appealed within ChillingEffects - it's likely that the legal owner of the content will refile the DMCA complaint. "
— Is not Google's attitude too soft here?
Do they post any warning/notice that "Please make sure that you have solved the issues. . ."?
And is it a manual, automatic or semi-automatic process?