Two days after YouTube announced the beta launch of their new video identification software
, a coalition of several of the world's leading Internet, media, and technology companies announced their joint support for a set of collaborative principles that enable the continued growth and development of user-generated content online and respect the intellectual property of content owners.
The companies supporting these principles include CBS Corp., Dailymotion, Fox Entertainment Group, Microsoft Corp., MySpace, NBC Universal, Veoh Networks Inc., Viacom Inc. and The Walt Disney Company. Interesting enough, Google and YouTube are nowhere to be found on the list.
The principles are to serve as a set of guidelines to help user-generated content (UGC) services and content creators work together towards their collective goal of bringing more content to more consumers through legitimate channels. The principles acknowledge a collective respect for protecting copyrights and recognize that filtering technologies must be effective and are only a part of what is necessary to achieve this goal.
But will words equate to actions? Certainly if all participating companies work together in sharing information or developing a universal water-marking solution that prevents mass distribution of pirated works, that would be a significant achievement. However, only "written principles" and the news of this new coalition just days after YouTube's announcement seems all too protective and coincidental.