If you've been following some of my posts recently -- and you should be -- I've been bringing you some of the latest bits of news regarding the trials and tribulations of would-be Internet content king YouTube. For the last couple years, the site has had huge numbers of users and generated millions of dollars of free publicity for Hollywood studios and their products. And even though the site has also had its share of troubles as well, it had still mostly managed to avoid anything really unpleasant -- that is, until now.

According to CNN, Viacom, parent company of MTV and Comedy Central, filed suit against YouTube and its parent company Google Tuesday. The suit alleges that YouTube has "almost 160,000 unauthorized clips of Viacom's programming have been available on YouTube and that these clips had been viewed more than 1.5 billion times." If that's true, what does Viacom want from Google and YouTube in the way of damages? How about a cool billion dollars. Yes, I said billion. In addition to money, Viacom also wants an injunction prohibiting Google and YouTube from further copyright infringement and to take down any and all Viacom-owned content from the site.

In a statement also released on Tuesday, Viacom said about Google and YouTube: "Their business model, which is based on building traffic and selling advertising off of unlicensed content, is clearly illegal and is in obvious conflict with copyright laws." Harsh words. At the moment, this doesn't look like something that'll be settled quickly but I think it will be settled eventually. Although, by the time it is, I'm sure the copyrighted content Viacom is so interested in protecting will have shown up on countless other sites all over the Internet. So, in the end, Viacom 's lawsuit will probably accomplish very little and the only people that will really benefit are the lawyers.
categories Movies, Cinematical