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November 10, 2006
CNN Remixes Itself
The questions of copyright and "official" versions just keep getting funnier.
This time we have CNN attempting (apparently successfully) to force YouTube to take down as copyright violation the original broadcast version of a show. But they have no problems with YouTube copies of an edited version, which they themselves showed.
Confused? Me too. Here's what I can piece together:
Bill Maher guests on Larry King Live. This show is shown live to parts of the US (East Coast) but rebroadcast from tape for later time zones (West Coast). On the live version, Maher made some remarks suggestiong that RNC Chairman Ken Mehlman is gay. My hipper gay friends tell me this is an open secret. He's closeted and all that, but yeah he's gay. OK, whatever.
Except CNN doesn't seem to like those remarks so when Maher's appearance gets rebroadcast for the later showing those comments are edited out. Of course people notice (duh, CNN really doesn't get it) and people who recorded the original version post it to YouTube. People also post the edited version. CNN sent a copyright violation letter to the person who posted the original, unedited version, and then edited its online transcript of the show to match what was later shown.
Here's the Americablog entry, which contains both the cease-and-desist letter and a link to the Huffington Post blog, which has the entire video and the screaming headline "CENSORED BY CNN".
Way to publicize a controversy and make yourselves look like idiots, guys.
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