UMG Suit vs. Veoh Thrown Out; Viacom-YouTube Next?

VeohLogo.jpgIn a case that YouTube has likely been monitoring closely, United States District Court for the Central District of California Judge A. Howard Matz rejected Universal Music Group‘s copyright-infringement suit against Veoh Networks, saying that the video site has been operating in compliance with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, AdAge.com reported.

“UMG contends that Veoh had knowledge of infringing material that it did not act expeditiously to remove,” Matz wrote in his decision, “but Veoh has shown when it did acquire knowledge of allegedly infringing material—whether from DMCA notices, informal notices, or other means—it expeditiously removed such material.”

Google-owned YouTube is involved in a similar $1 billion lawsuit filed by media giant Viacom.

Veoh Networks founder and CEO Dmitry Shapiro reacted to the ruling:

This has been a very large drain of time and resources both human and financial. Getting rid of this ball and chain and looming cloud opens up many more opportunities for the company.

Electronic Frontier Foundation staff attorney Frederick Von Lohmann believes that even though the Viacom-YouTube suit is being heard in a different jurisdiction, the favorable ruling for Veoh is a boon for YouTube, telling AdAge.com:

This ruling will not be binding on judge in that case, but because there are so few court cases applying this area of law, every decision is very important. A judge in New York will have to think twice to come out a different way with the same set of facts.looming cloud opens up many more opportunities for the company.