TorrentFreak, a news website about copyright and privacy, reported recently that Japanese media conglomerate Kadokawa has targeted to expose 7 YouTube users for infringing copyright of their works.
The website shared a letter sent by attorney Hiroyuki Nakajima from a Tokyo-based firm on behalf of Kadokawa to YouTube featuring a list of anime videos including the hyperlinks requesting action against them.
The letter appears to be a standard DMCA takedown request against the videos.
“We demand that you immediately disable access to the Infringing Work and cease any use, reproduction, and distribution of the Original Work. Specifically, we request that you remove or disable the Infringing Work from www.youtube.com and/or any of your system or services,” the letter reads.
The letter was issued via email on April 5, and YouTube seems to have responded to the takedown notice immediately as the cited works’ links lead to a page claiming that Kadokawa had filed a copyright claim and that the content was no longer available.
However, in addition to taking down the videos, the manga publisher applied for a DMCA subpoena asking YouTube the next day for the disclosure of the identities of the seven YouTubers.
“Kadokawa Corporation is seeking a subpoena pursuant to 17 U.S.C. § 512(h) to obtain information sufficient to identify the persons infringing its copyrighted works. The purpose for which this subpoena is sought is to obtain the identity of the alleged infringers. Such information will only be used for the purpose of protecting rights under the Copyright Act,” it reads.
According to the subpoena, YouTube must provide the names and addresses of the seven users, as well as their email addresses and phone numbers. The publisher also wants all of their access logs from the last six months, including IP addresses, dates, and hours, as well as credit card information and bank account data.
Kadokawa, along with Kodansha, Shueisha, and Shogakukan, is currently engaged in a massive lawsuit against Cloudflare Inc., the U.S information technology company in the Tokyo District Court seeking an injunction and about 460 million yen (about US$4 million) in compensation for damages.
The 4 publishers announced in January 2022 that they will file a lawsuit against Cloudflare for breaching their copyrights by distributing data from pirate manga sites.