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Pinedale Online > News > March 2007 > John Perry Barlow appears on CCís Colbert Report
John Perry Barlow appears on Comedy Central's Colbert Report
Barlow lives in Pinedale. He was a guest on Comedy Central's Colbert Report show with Stephen Colbert
by Pinedale Online!
March 26, 2007

John Perry Barlow appeared on Comedy Centralís Colbert Report (pronounced ďCohl-bear Rah-pourĒ) on Monday, March 26. Stephen Colbert interviewed Barlow for his part in the Electronic Frontier Foundationís free speech lawsuit involving a video clip which parodied the Colbert Report show that was placed on the internet video website YouTube. Comedy Centralís parent company, Viacom, filed a copyright complaint and demanded the clip be removed. See below for a press release by EFF dated Thursday, March 22, 2007.

Click here for the Comedy Central Colbert Report interview which was quickly posted on YouTube: Cobert vs lawyer representing youtube user (If you've watched this interview and caught John's comment about how fast the internet and market work together, and web infringement of copyrighted intellectual property, note that the domain "" was registered on Tuesday, March 27th by Vladimir Dusil in Columbus, Ohio, with an gmail referring to Ohio State. No indication of who Dusil is, who he works for, or relationship to Comedy Central, Stephen Colbert, or the Colbert Report show. At first all that page had on it was the domain address. Later, this was added: "Barlow, you were wrong. The ripoff starts today!"))

(Editorís Note: John Perry Barlow lives in Pinedale. He is a retired Wyoming cattle rancher, a former lyricist for the Grateful Dead, and co-founder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). Since May of 1998, he has been a Fellow at Harvard Law School's Berkman Center for Internet and Society. He was born in Sublette County, Wyoming in 1947 and was educated here in a one room schoolhouse. He graduated from Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut with an honors degree in comparative religion in 1969.)

Free Speech Battle Over Online Parody of 'Colbert Report'
MoveOn, Brave New Films Sue Viacom For Illegal Takedown of YouTube Video

Press Release by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)
Thursday, March 22, 2007

San Francisco - The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) asked a federal court today to protect the free speech rights of Civic Action and Brave New Films after their satirical send-up of "The Colbert Report" was removed from YouTube following a baseless copyright complaint from media giant Viacom.

The video, called "Stop the Falsiness," was created by MoveOn and Brave New Films as a tongue-in-cheek commentary on Colbert's portrayal of the right-wing media and parodying MoveOn's own reputation for earnest political activism. The short film, uploaded to YouTube in August 2006, includes clips from "The Colbert Report" as well as humorous original interviews about show host Stephen Colbert. In March of this year, Viacom -- the parent company of Comedy Central -- demanded that YouTube take "Stop the Falsiness" down, claiming the video infringed its copyrights.

"Our clients' video is an act of free speech and a fair use of 'Colbert Report' clips," said EFF Staff Attorney Corynne McSherry. "Viacom knows this -- it's the same kind of fair use that 'The Colbert Report' and 'The Daily Show' rely upon every night as they parody other channels' news coverage."

Under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), a mere allegation of copyright infringement on the Internet can result in content removal, silencing a creator before any misuse is proven. This "shoot first, ask questions later" system can silence online artists and critics, creating unfair hurdles to free speech.

"Online sites like YouTube have revolutionized political expression and can give the little guy an audience of millions for a political point of view. An entertainment powerhouse like Viacom must not be allowed to muzzle independent video creators and their free speech," said Eli Pariser, Executive Director of Civic Action. "Copyright owners need to double-check their claims and think about free speech rights before erasing political content from sites like YouTube and misusing the DMCA."

The lawsuit asks for a declaratory judgment that "Stop the Falsiness" does not infringe any Viacom copyright, as well as damages and injunctive relief restraining Viacom from bringing any more copyright claims in connection with the video. EFF is working with Stanford's Center for Internet and Society in this case.

For more on the lawsuit:

To watch "Stop the Falsiness":

Related Links:
Free Speech Battle Over Online Parody of 'Colbert Report': MoveOn, Brave New Films Sue Viacom For Illegal Takedown of YouTube Video (March 22, 2007, Electronic Frontier Foundation press release)
Electronic Frontier Foundation
John Perry Barlow page
John Perry Barlow on Wikipedia
Comedy Central Colbert Report
Colbert Nation website

Pinedale Online > News > March 2007 > John Perry Barlow appears on CCís Colbert Report

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