Theft, Lies, and Facebook Video

Theft Lies Facebook Video Hank Green

What to do? Well, the lack of searchability on Facebook makes it impossible for creators to discover when their content is being freebooted, so if you see suspect content, please reach out to the creator so they can take action. If you have any legal or technical solutions you think might work, please post those as responses to this. And above all, just know that this is an issue and share what you can with who you can. Facebook won’t hold itself accountable, but maybe they will if we make them.

data_number crunching_theft video


via Theft, Lies, and Facebook Video by Hank Green | Medium.


Note: This is a subject I’m going to return to with great ferocity: Freebooting. With the ‘Ode To Chicken’ video posted recently, and with several others on Facebook, it has become the trend to steal someone’s hard work and then use it to gain large amounts of engagement. Basically to game the algorithms and make irrelevant pages pop to the top of your feed. Just as Hank Green suggests above this is something that will only change when we hold these platforms accountable. In the case of FB, it is funny because they really handle this in the most antiquated way, but in the case of Twitter (which I’ll make a case against later) they don’t even have a system in place for self-reporting theft of video.

This post will be my jumping off post to just how prevalent this is. Facebook as a platform is the largest and ‘newest,’ and as such, has the most theft. It also has the most flagrant cases which makes it the easy target. The others (Vine, Instagram, Tumblr, Twitter) are equally as culpable if not more. If video marketing is the most important thing in social media, and as the hurdles to viewing it have been removed, then the platforms implementing it owe it to us all to begin by trying to protect that content, not pilfer it to increase their market share.

They are in so many ways, as the author rightly points out, no excuses for this behavior.  They are in effect following YouTube’s ‘early success’ by allowing it, but since YT was a scrappy start-up they can in some ways be overlooked or forgiven, while Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr (Yahoo! by association), Vine, Instagram…are all well established by now and can not benefit from that logic while profiting off of ad sales. The usage of such unregulated or wild-west mentality is despicable.

So read the article, it is very worthwhile. Expect me to follow up with some of the documented cases that I’ve captured over the past few weeks. It is a practice that will require each of us to take a stand on, and to report as we see it, and to become aware of it as we see it in our feeds, timelines, and so on.