A faux fracas over Time Warner and YouTube
The UK's Guardian has an intriguing little story today: Time Warner CEO Dick Parsons (who, one must disclose, signs the Browser's paychecks) is negotiating with YouTube to deal with the problem of videos that infringe his company's copyrights, and now that Google's buying the video-sharing site, Parsons says he's going to move those negotiations to his company's partner, which owns a 5 percent stake in Time Warne's AOL unit. A sensible approach, and smarter than suing, right?
But once the story got released into the blogosphere, "in negotiations" somehow got translated intto "Dick Parsons to Sue Goobe." That was the inaccurate scream from GigaOm. (Not to mention ineloquent: "Goobe" for the combination of Google and YouTube?) John Battelle's headline at Searchblog, inaccurately picks up the meme from Boing Boing: "Sour Grapes: Time to SueTube?" Pete Cashmore at Mashable is one of the few to get the story straight: "What Parsons hasn't said to the press is that he's necessarily going to sue Google: he just says he'll pursue the infringements."
It's a case study in how the blogosphere propagates errors. Click-hungry bloggers scan their RSS feedreaders, pick up on each other's headlines, and don't bother to read the original source material. If they bothered to read the original Guardian article, they'd see that Parsons is hardly prepping for his day in court. Which isn't surprising. Parsons, a lawyer by training, knows that it's better to get what you want in private negotiations than in the drama of a courtroom - though the latter would make for more entertaining blog posts.
Bloggers are LOSERS! If all you can do is sit around your stupid computer all day and type a bunch of worthless crap that nobody with real lives cares about, then you're a LOSER! Go out, get laid, have some fun, but get your sticky fingers off those keyboards.
the power of the media and how they can switch your words.
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