The lawsuit claims that the alleged troll, Christopher Brady, had used false copyright strikes to extort YouTubers and is now using the Digital Millennium Copyright Act’s (DMCA’s) provisions against fraudulent claims to seek damages and an injunction.
As The Verge reports, Brady had sent multiple complaints that several Minecraft content creators had infringed on his copyright. YouTube removed the videos, a practice it carries out whenever a copyright claim is submitted.
However, one YouTuber – going by the handle of ObbyRaidz – was sent a message from Brady that demanded US$150 via PayPal or US$75 in bitcoin under the threat of a third copyright strike. After three strikes, a YouTube account is permanently banned from the platform.
A similar message was sent to Kenzo, another Minecraft YouTuber. In this case, Brady requested US$300 under the same threat.
Both claim that their efforts to speak with someone at YouTube fell on deaf ears until they made videos on the issue, at which point YouTube began legal proceedings.
“Brady has submitted these notices as part of a scheme to harass and extort money from the users that he falsely accuses of infringement,” the lawsuit reads. “Brady’s extortionate and harassing activities described here may, at least in part, be motivated by his failings in his Minecraft interactions.”
The lawsuit goes on to allege that Brady used “at least 15 different online identities, all of which YouTube traced back to him,” to carry out his various infringement claims.
A statement from YouTube said: “We regularly terminate accounts of those that misuse our copyright system. In this case of particularly egregious abuse, where the copyright removal process was used for extortion, we felt compelled to pursue further legal action and make it clear that we do not tolerate abuse of our platform or its users.”
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