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[Slashdot] - RIAA's YouTube-DL Takedown Ticks Off Developers and GitHub's CEO

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An RIAA takedown request, which removed the YouTube-DL repository from GitHub, has ticked off developers and GitHub's CEO. Numerous people responded by copying and republishing the contested code, including in some quite clever ways. Meanwhile, GitHub's CEO is "annoyed" as well, offering help to get the repo reinstated. TorrentFreak reports: Soon after the RIAA notice took YouTube-DL offline many developers spoke out in protest. They believe that the music industry group went too far and started to republish copies of the code everywhere. Over the past several days, we have seen hundreds of new forks and copies appear online. These were also posted to GitHub, where YouTube-DL forks remain easy to find and continue to be uploaded. The code was also posted in some places one wouldn't expect. For example, there's still a copy in GitHub's DMCA notice repository, which some people find quite amusing. And the list of pull requests can be quite entertaining in themselves. One of the most creative responses we've seen was posted to Twitter by @GalacticFurball who encoded YouTube-DL into images that can be easily shared, encouraging others to share these as well. "I would also suggest that you save and repost the images, as one single source kind of defeats the point. Maybe start a hashtag trend or something. Make songs, and poetry. Get that data out there." This triggered even more creativity, with people finding alternative means to share the code online, all to counter the RIAA's takedown request. Meanwhile, GitHub's CEO Nat Friedman wasn't sitting still either. While the Microsoft-owned developer platform had to respond to the takedown notice, Friedman himself actively reached out to YouTube-DL's developers to help them get their project reinstated. The CEO joined YouTube-DL's IRC channel hoping to connect with the owner of the repository so he can help to get it unsuspended. "GitHub exists to help developers. We never want to interfere with their work. We want to help the youtube-dl maintainers defeat the DMCA claim so that we can restore the repo," Friedman told TorrentFreak, explaining his actions. GitHub's CEO suggested that YouTube-DL won't be reinstated in its original form. But, the software may be able to return without the rolling cipher circumvention code and the examples of how to download copyrighted material.

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Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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