The Northeastern Ohio Media Group, a business partner with the Plain Dealer newspaper in Cleveland, has demanded that an Ohio liberal political blog pull a video of Gov. John Kasich’s awkward interview with the newspaper’s editorial board.
The newspaper’s website had originally published the video of its interview with Democratic candidate Ed Fitzgerald and Kasich, whom it eventually endorsed. But the video was later taken down, for reasons unknown. Plunderbund, a liberal blog, posted parts of the video because its editors “felt the video was important.”
Plunderbund then reported Tuesday that NOMG had threatened to sue if the video was not removed.
They received a letter from senior NOMG staff, who alleged that Plunderbund had “illegally copied” the video and demanded that it be taken down or the blog would face legal action.
“We insist you delete the material immediately. We have registered the copyright, which means your illegal use of it entitles us to statutory damages, which can be quite steep, and recovery of all fees we pay our attorneys as we compel you to adhere to the copyright law,” Chris Quinn, NOMG’s vice president of content, wrote in the letter.
In the video, per Plunderbund’s description, Kasich “slumped in his chair, refused to acknowledge the other candidates and ignored repeated attempts by PD staff to answer even basic questions about his policies and programs.”
Plunderbund removed the video while it discussed its options, according to Tuesday’s post:
We believe the Plain Dealer and NEO Media Group, the PD’s non-union, online counterpart, have an obligation to the voters of Ohio to share the entire video interview, especially since they still chose to endorse John Kasich after his disrespectful performance during the interview. We implore them to restore the video.
We believe our posting of the video falls under the category of fair use, however we have temporarily removed the video while we discuss our options.
Meanwhile, an anonymous YouTube user republished the video on Tuesday.
UPDATE: 2:57 p.m. ET
Plunderbund has uploaded the edited video again, now with some of their own touches — inter-titles, music and a clear copyright credit to NOMG.
Image via Vimeo.