Ig Nobel Prizes blocked by YouTube takedown over 1914 song snippet – can’t find human to fix the error

YouTube, the Ig Nobel Prizes, and the Year 1914

YouTube’s notorious takedown algorithms are blocking the video of the 2021 Ig Nobel Prize ceremony.

We have so far been unable to find a human at YouTube who can fix that. We recommend that you watch the identical recording on Vimeo.

The Fatal Song

This is a photo of John McCormack, who sang the song “Funiculi, Funicula” in the year 1914, inducing YouTube to block the 2021 Ig Nobel Prize ceremony.

Here’s what triggered this: The ceremony includes bits of a recording (of tenor John McCormack singing “Funiculi, Funicula”) made in the year 1914.

The Corporate Takedown

YouTube’s takedown algorithm claims that the following corporations all own the copyright to that audio recording that was MADE IN THE YEAR 1914: “SME, INgrooves (on behalf of Emerald); Wise Music Group, BMG Rights Management (US), LLC, UMPG Publishing, PEDL, Kobalt Music Publishing, Warner Chappell, Sony ATV Publishing, and 1 Music Rights Societies”

UPDATES: (Sept 19, 2021) There’s an ongoing discussion on Slashdot.(Sept 13, 2021) There’s an ongoing discussion on Hacker News, about this problem.

Source: Improbable Research » Blog Archive

First of all, what is copyright doing protecting anything from 1914? The creator is more than dead and buried and the model of creating once and keeping raking in money is ridiculous anyway.
Second, this shows the power the large copyright holders hold over smaller players – and the Ig Nobel Prizes aren’t exactly a small player! If a big corporation throws a DMCA at you, there’s nothing you can do – you are caught in a Kafka-esque hole with no hope in sight.

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