Is there anything more stupid than the AP threatening an AP affiliate for embedding video from the AP's YouTube channel? It's doubtful.
Here is another great moment in A.P. history. In its quest to become the RIAA of the newspaper industry, the A.P.’s executives and lawyers are beginning to match their counterparts in the music industry for cluelessness. A country radio station in Tennessee, WTNQ-FM, received a cease-and-desist letter from an A.P. vice president of affiliate relations for posting videos from the A.P.’s official Youtube channel on its Website.
No, it's not a story from the Onion, and it's no longer April Fools Day.
Frank Strovel, an employee at the radio station who tried to talk some sense into the A.P. executive Twittered yesterday:
I was on the phone arguing w/ AP today. We were embedding their YouTube vids on our station’s site. We’re an AP affiliate.
And then added:
They asked us to taken them down. I asked, “Why do you have a YouTube page w/ embed codes for websites?” Still... they said NO.
The story was picked up by the Knoxville News, and then by a local video producer Chrisitian Grantham, who captured the following Skype interview with Strovel in the video below (which is not an A.P. video, so I am going to embed it). Strovel notes that the A.P. accused the station of “stealing their licensed content.” He sounds flumoxed, as he should be. This back and forth during the interview says it all:
Strovel: And we’re an A.P. affiliate for crying out loud! I stumped him on that one. . . . What is really shocking is that they were shocked that they’ve got a YouTube channel that people are embedding on their Websites. He seemed shocked by that. ‘Oh, I am going to have to look into that” is what he told me.
Grantham: What an idiot!
Strovel: I know, I know.
What's sad is that somewhere inside the AP borg today, some poor employee who did the right thing by working to virally distribute AP material, with embedded advertising, is getting chewed out or worse, all because his or her bosses are too stupid for words. There's certainly a reason the venerable organization is going down the drain.
But wait, what's this? An AP video embed from the official AP YouTube page? On this website, which isn't even an AP affiliate????
I just randomly thought you'd want to see AP footage from Washington state, where people rescue Moose instead of shoot them. Because it's from the AP. On a website.
Update: Brainwrap, in the comments:
Let me see if I can put this in terms...
...that I can understand, as a former movie theater manager.
If I understand this correctly, this is roughly the equivalent of Paramount Pictures suing AMC for displaying "Star Trek" posters & trailers in their theaters--which are also going to be showing "Star Trek".