You're on YouTube

Note should be taken of a recent federal court for the Southern District of New York ruling (pdf) in the Viacom v. Google litigation. The Electronic Frontier Foundation blogs the story in a July 2 post by EFF staffer, Kurt Opsahl.
Google [is ordered] to produce to Viacom (over Google's objections): all data from the Logging database concerning each time a YouTube video has been viewed on the YouTube website or through embedding on a third-party website.

The Logging database contains: for each instance a video is watched, the unique “login ID” of the user who watched it, the time when the user started to watch the video, the internet protocol address other devices connected to the internet use to identify the user’s computer (“IP address”), and the identifier for the video.
The Net media, Good Morning Silicon Valley, reports that Google's argument (which cited the VPPA, 18 U.S.C. § 2710) "that such a release would represent a massive violation of user privacy was waved away by the judge."

EFF's Opsahl writes:
The Court's erroneous ruling is a set-back to privacy rights, and will allow Viacom to see what you are watching on YouTube. We urge Viacom to back off this overbroad request and Google to take all steps necessary to challenge this order and protect the rights of its users.
related links:

The New York Times initial story, March 14, 2007

Wired blog post, July 2, 2008

TechCrunch blog post, July 3, 2008

L.A. Times Technology blog post, July 3, 2008

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