Thursday, June 4, 2009

Dear Viacom: You're Doing It Wrong

I've been very excited about the upcoming release of The Beatles: Rock Band after hearing about it earlier this week. It's the first PS3 game sold on disc I'm going to snap up since, well, Rock Band 2. Beyond the simple fact that it's Rock Band loaded with Beatles music (and I love the Beatles), I've been rather impressed by the visual style, particularly this intro video directed by Pete Candeland of Gorillaz music video fame:

Hopefully this video hasn't been flagged for a copyright violation by the time you read this post. It rules

However, I was rather surprised to see that a particular copy of the intro video was flagged for removal from YouTube due to a copyright violation. Go ahead, hit play, I dare ya:

Yes, Viacom has decided that they want to forego free advertising for their upcoming video game in order to defend their copyright. WTF? Somebody doesn't get it. Viacom, this isn't someone infringing your copyright. This is someone providing you with a viral marketing campaign for free. You are effectively telling them: "no, don't advertise our product for free. We don't want that"

I forsee a long uphill battle until old media companies finally realize that viral video distribution is actually a good thing. Eventually they'll be drug kicking and screaming to the realization that piracy is good.