Prince Vs. Radiohead

Copyright legislation can be tricky, but in a battle between the actual author of a song and an artist performing a cover, the winner would seem pretty obvious, right? Not so, says Prince. The man in purple recently performed a cover of Radiohead’s Pablo Honey hit “Creep” at California’s Coachella festival, only to have all videos of or relating to the performance removed from YouTube with the excuse of “copyright violation.”

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Copyright legislation can be tricky, but in a battle between the actual author of a song and an artist performing a cover, the winner would seem pretty obvious, right? Not so, says Prince. The man in purple recently performed a cover of Radiohead’s Pablo Honey hit “Creep” at California’s Coachella festival, only to have all videos of or relating to the performance removed from YouTube with the excuse of “copyright violation.”

Not only did this anger the thousands of Prince and Radiohead fans who were not able to attend the festival, but it didn’t sit too well with Thom and company either. The boys in Radiohead argued that the authority to block or unblock performances of their songs lay in their hands, with Yorke calling for action: “Well, tell him to unblock it. It’s our…song.” Representatives of Prince declined to comment on the situation, and YouTube has yet to make any changes.

Internet media giant YouTube is no stranger to confronting copyright conflict on the company’s high-traffic website, with non-legitimate videos being removed every day. So far, though, there have not been any newsworthy cases of the removal of a video violating copyright restrictions. The next move belongs to Prince and YouTube, and hopefully they won’t leave us (or Radiohead, for that matter) “high and dry.”

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