The BBC’s success in taking down Wings Over Scotland’s YouTube channel – and Youtube’s complacent compliance with the BBC instruction – has a very dodgy foundation in law. Excerpts of copyright material may be published for purposes of “criticism, review or quotation” provided the source is acknowledged. As Wings would only use BBC material for review and criticism – they are hardly repeating it as great news reporting – the BBC’s copyright infringement claim is at best very dubious.
More to the point, this despicable infringement on freedom of speech is appalling behaviour for a state broadcaster. Removal of criticism is the BBC’s only purpose here. The BBC is not protecting a state asset – the old news clips in question have zero commercial value; Wings was not republishing episodes of Dr Who.
Not content with constant anti-Scottish output, the BBC is extending its reach to anti-Scottish censorship.
If you have not yet seen it, I do urge you to watch this eye-opening, indeed breathtaking, documentary on the BBC’s fake news output in the Scottish referendum campaign. The strange colour toning in the BBC excerpts were in fact an additional defence against a copyright claim. Watch it now in case the BBC and YouTube take this one down too.