Image of Lofi Girl
Source: Engadget

Lofi Girl is back online following ‘abusive’ copyright strikes
Earlier this week, the videos on the YouTube channel were removed

Lofi Girl image alongside a message from YouTube
Lofi Girl is back online following ‘abusive’ copyright strikes that occurred earlier.
Source: Malaysia Trend

This week, video streaming service YouTube blocked the popular radio channel Lofi Girl over copyright notices which it later called false and ‘abusive.’ The streams of the channel had been running for more than two years, and relaunched on Tuesday, July 12.

Reportedly, the takedown which took place on July 10th, was a result of a demand of Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). Apparently, this was from the record label FML Music Sdn Bhd Malaysia. Though the platform reversed the strikes right after this, Lofi Girl used the incident for more strict controls on the system

The owner of the account Lofi Girl (formerly called ChilledCow) tweeted a copy of the DMCA takedown notice. On Sunday, July 10, the notice was for two of its lo-fi hip hop ‘beats to relax/study to’ video streams. In the retweet, Lofi Girl called the reports ‘false copyright strikes,’ with YouTube corroborating the claim the next day. The platform noted how it had reinstated the videos, but the channel could take 24-48 hours to go back to normal. The relaunch of Lofi Girl’s channels came on Tuesday.

“Confirmed the takedown requests were abusive [and] terminated the claimants [sic] account,” it said.

The user noted how this was not the first time that the videos had been taken down as an error. In 2020, YouTube removed the stream briefly owing to a violation of its terms of service which it later referred to as a mistake. Additionally, in 2017, the channel went down due to non-fraudulent copyright issues over the use of the clip from the Studio Ghibli film Whispers of the Heart. They stated how it should hold all rights to stream its lo-fi covers without any legal problems. Moreover, he record label told news outlet Malaysiakini that hackers made use of the account to send the notice.

Following the statement from YouTube, the user complained in a tweet thread that YouTube’s system opened creators up to false claims with minimal recourse. Lofi Girl stated how the lack of protection or ‘review of false claims’ was appalling. They said how it was fully ‘out of control,’ and that they remain hopeful that YouTube would take to bring changes ‘to their copyright reporting system’ to control such an instance from taking place, ‘and protect all content creators.’

Apparently, FML had its actual page on YouTube used to send out these strikes. However, YouTube’s system has even enabled takedowns coming from clearcut impersonation. In June, Bungie sued a YouTuber who it accused of creating an account to mimic one of its contractors. Further, issuing dozens of copyright strikes against additional creators. Turns out, it was attempting to smear the company’s name by faking a rigorous copyright crackdown.