RIAA seeks to cover its legal costs in ongoing Yout dispute

Business News Digital Labels & Publishers

By Chris Cooke | Posted on Wednesday, November 2, 2022


The Recording Industry Association Of America has asked the US court that oversaw its recent legal battle with stream ripping site Yout to award it legal costs of $250,000.

While the music industry has sued and threatened to sue a number of stream ripping sites, which allow people to download permanent copies of temporary streams, most often YouTube streams, in this case, it was actually Yout who sued the RIAA. It became legal after the record industry trade group tried to remove the Yout service from the Google search engine.

Yout wanted the court to confirm that his service was legal, and therefore the RIAA should not have tried to delist it from Google on copyright grounds. Once underway, the legal battle focused primarily on whether or not you circumvented the technical protection measures put in place by YouTube to prevent people from making copies of your streams, as the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The US does not allow circumvention of such measures.

The streaming service argued that YouTube did not have any technical protection measures because, in reality, anyone with the necessary knowledge can download a copy of a stream from Google’s video site through their web browser. However, doing so involves a series of tedious steps and, the RIAA argued, the ways in which YouTube has made it difficult to download content from its site constitutes a technical protection measure.

The judge ultimately sided with the RIAA and dismissed Yout’s lawsuit, concluding that “Yout has not plausibly argued that YouTube lacks a technology measure; …that the YouTube technological measure is not effective; …that Yout has not circumvented YouTube’s technological measure; …and that Yout has not raped [the anti-circumvention provision] of the DMCA.”

He also concluded that “retesting is useless,” which basically means there is no point in Yout filing an amended lawsuit in his court: the Ripper already did so once while the dispute was going on. However, Yout apparently plans to appeal the ruling by taking the case to the Second Circuit court of appeals.

Meanwhile, the RIAA is pushing to have its legal costs covered. In its attempt to persuade the judge to order Yout to cover at least some of his attorney’s fees, the trade body argues that the Ripper’s claims were always implausible and therefore his claim was not. reasonable. And not only that, he acknowledges, Yout’s legal action was basically a delaying tactic and a publicity stunt.

“Plaintiff Yout LLC filed this lawsuit against the RIAA,” it states in a new legal filing this week, “over the implausible claim that its stream-ripping software, which allows users to download audio and video from streaming services , does not circumvent technological measures. that restrict access to digital music video files on YouTube.”

“Yout’s lawsuit was unfounded from the beginning,” he adds, highlighting the dismissal and the judge’s declaration to resubmit his lawsuit. He continued: “Pleading again is useless because, as anyone who has used YouTube knows, YouTube users can watch and listen to music videos for free on its ad-supported service, but those users cannot download digital files containing the record. companies’ most valuable copyrighted works.

“YouTube prevents these types of downloads through built-in technology that protects the underlying digital files, safeguards that Yout’s streaming service bypasses to access those files,” he says. “Yout’s conduct violates the express prohibition in YouTube’s terms of service and is textbook circumvention.”

“Faced with these obvious facts,” the RIAA argues, “you brought an unreasonable claim to achieve a legally unwarranted result: advertising your illegal service and furthering your ability to provide your users with a circumvention device to illegally copy downloads from the record companies. ‘valuable works protected by copyright’.

“While this lawsuit (and now the appeal) is pending, Yout believes that it can continue to allow circumvention and infringement of the valuable copyrights of RIAA members, including by consumers who might otherwise purchase the recordings. copyrighted soundtrack or listen to a licensed copy on an ad-supported or subscription-based streaming service,” it continues. “In addition to this potentially irreparable damage, Yout continues to force the RIAA to incur significant expense in defending this lawsuit.”

With all of that in mind, “RIAA seeks an award of attorneys’ fees of $250,000, plus additional amounts spent on this motion. This request for attorneys’ fees is conservative, both in terms of attorneys’ fees and time requested, and is much less than the amount that would be calculated using a traditional pole star analysis and less than the amount of fees actually paid.”

It then concludes: “RIAA attempted numerous times to contact Yout’s attorney to discuss the resolution of this motion and matter, but Yout’s attorney responded that he no longer represents Yout and has since filed a notice of appeal. Meanwhile, Yout has continued to offer his circumvention technology. The RIAA respectfully requests that the court grant your motion for attorneys’ fees.”

We are waiting to see how the judge responds.


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