Saturday, April 28, 2007

I am, no kidding, going to war with Benny Hinn.

Benny Hinn doesn't know what he just got himself into. Actually, neither do I. But I'm ready and willing to bring this battle to his doorstep.

This morning I received this e-mail from Youtube. You can click the link if you want to see the original, or you can just keep reading.

The e-mail informed me that Benny Hinn Ministries had demanded that YouTube pull the first video in our "Office Outcast" series off the internet on grounds of it committing copyright infringement against Mr. Hinn and the World Healing Church. Subsequent infringements would force YouTube to take action against me.

For those of you unfamiliar with copyright law (fine, I'm one of those people too, but stick with me for a moment), you aren't allowed to upload copyrighted material of any kind onto the web without the express permission of the copyright owner. This is a good law - it protects the interests of the creative parties so that people can't just go around with your creation and sell it for profit.

Since YouTube arrived, it's been tougher to enforce that law, and it's been a tricky legal situation for them. A lot of companies turn a blind eye to it, figuring that free publicity beats copyright infringement any day, and there's nothing really to lose by letting people post old video clips. On the flip side, some companies rigorously enforce these laws, hunting across the internet for people abusing the law, writing cease-and-desist letters or having the website pull the videos. People get angry at this, but this is fine, too. The web is too large to be policed effectively by an outside party or the FCC, and so personal responsibility is necessary in order for the internet to run smoothly. But that's not what this is about.

You see, I didn't violate any copyright laws when I mentioned Benny Hinn's name in the video. I didn't violate any copyright laws when I mentioned that the video was about Andy and Luis trying to get Benny Hinn on the phone. I simply didn't violate any copyright law that Mr. Hinn or the World Healing Church own. I didn't.

So, I didn't violate his copyright laws, I didn't commit libel against him, and if Mr. Hinn feels that my language was scurrilous or abusive, he should also be aware that the Sedition Act was overturned in 1921, and wouldn't have applied to him anyway. But now he and YouTube have pulled the video and blocked me from importing the same file, or similar files that might also mention mention Mr. Hinn's name.

In fact, the only rights that seemed to have been violated were mine - my First Amendment rights. And I'm no constitutional warrior and I'm not a fan of people who beat people over the head with it, but I object to the gesture and I don't feel like taking this lying down.

So, get ready, Benny. I'm bringing the battle to you.



At April 28, 2007 11:49 PM, Blogger Dana said...

Go after him! You were totally in the right. People who go after other people for no reason irk me. Benny Hinn has officially irked if you need help, let me know!

At April 29, 2007 8:45 AM, Blogger Kate said...

Huh... so if we carry that out and apply it to everyone it would violate copyright to use any business or person's name (or any of their products or works) on the Internet. Ever. No more "did you catch that reference" ever.

Youtube didn't have time to investigate, they just pulled it. How did Benny Hinn find it anyway?

At April 29, 2007 8:55 AM, Blogger Kate said...

"Benny Hinn Ministries" is trademarked, Benny Hinn is not.

At April 29, 2007 4:56 PM, Blogger Assistant Village Idiot said...

Ben, twumc should be involved in any decision you make. I imagine they might have an actual attorney they run things by from time to time.

Youtube pulls lots of stuff Muslims find offensive, just because they complained and youtube doesn't want the hassle. Sounds like Hinn is using the same manipulation here.

There has been a run on companies going after bloggers for saying uncomplimentary things. The bad publicity they generate usually makes them regret that. Spreading the word about the film being pulled may cost the Benny Hinn people more in bad publicity than they wanted.

At April 29, 2007 8:17 PM, Blogger Erin said...

I always knew there was something fishy about that whole third-wave movement. My guess is, Henny Binn (don't want to get my post pulled for using someone's name!) is just upset that you're a growing Christian without any miraculous healings or daily slayings of the Spirit to prove it. My guess is you'll be okay in the long-run, as long as they don't trace any copies of "Counterfeit Revival" on your account.

At April 30, 2007 5:49 PM, Blogger Ante Solium said...

Ya, I'm wondering how Benny Hinn found it too... Is he watching every video on Youtube looking for someone to mention him? Only Ben Wyman could have luck this bad... Anyway, I've got your back.

At May 24, 2007 8:28 PM, Blogger Caitlin said...

I've always hated Benny Hinn. If you start looking into his business practices you'd be APPALLED. I think maybe John Stosuel did a documentary on him? Some one of my psych professors has us watch it. Anyway the "ministry" has a $10 million dollar house in Malibu and more then a few BMW's not to mention the $10,000 a night hotel rooms his daughter gets with her boyfriend. I don't think they're being slain by the spirit in there.


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