Universal Music uses false copyright claim to censor news program about its false copyright claim

The saga of Universal Music's fraudulent attempt to censor the video major music recording artists produced in support of MegaUpload continues. Not content with perjuring themselves with a false claim of ownership via YouTube's takedown system, Universal has now sent a takedown notice to censor a news report that reproduced the video.

Universal had Monday's episode of Tech News Today pulled off of YouTube for simply reporting on the controversy. Host Tom Merritt and crew played two clips of the "Mega Song" video while discussing the issue and MegaUpload's pending lawsuit Monday afternoon, which was too much for Universal: it filed a copyright dispute and had the episode pulled from YouTube by Monday night. Never mind that news reporting and commentary are core elements of the traditional fair use analysis, of course — or that no audio from the video was even played during first clip.

Tom tells us he wasn't informed of the video's removal until a fan told him on Twitter, and that the episode was promptly restored when he complained using YouTube's automated dispute process — but Universal followed up with an official DMCA takedown request on Tuesday morning, and the show is currently down. Tom's filed YouTube's corresponding DMCA counter-dispute and the video will go back up in 10 days unless Universal decides to go full-on crazy and actually file a lawsuit, but at this point the damage has been done. As Tom says, "In 10 days a daily news show is worthless, so Universal was able to censor this episode of Tech News Today."

Universal has 'Tech News Today' episode yanked from YouTube for reporting on MegaUpload promo video [The Verge]