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Published: April 25, 2022

Written by: Stefan Velikov

  • Last month several false DMCA strikes were received by many Destiny 2 Youtubers
  • Bungie issued a subpoena to Google, claiming it needs information on these alleged copyright claim abusers
  • Google has refused to give out data, claiming this information can be accessed freely, and the subpoena creates an “undue burden on a disinterested non-party”

In recent times, some Destiny 2 content creators have been flooded with “false” copyright claims, prompting Bungie to take action, but Google is not cooperating.

Bungie Issues a Subpoena over Alleged Copyright Abusers

In March, Bungie filed a complaint claiming YouTube is lacking in policing its official DMCA striking process. This was prompted due to several cases where many independent Destiny 2 content creators received “false” DMCA strikes on their content.

A publicly available letter from the records of the state of Washington seems to show Google denying Bungie’s initial subpoena for Gmail records of alleged false DMCA strikers. This is why Bungie moved to file a separate subpoena under Rule 45 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure for expedited document production.

First reported by TorrentFreak, Bungie’s new attempt to seek a Rule 45 subpoena is an attempt to circumvent Google’s claims it is a non-party in the lawsuit. This would obligate Google to give the user data it has on the alleged fraudsters ahead of any discovery.

According to Bungie, these individuals caused “nearly incalculable damage” by fooling the YouTube copyright system.

It is paramount that Google complies with the subpoena to catch the alleged perpetrators. The defendants used the same Gmail address pattern as the third-party company Bungie contracts to deliver DMCA strikes to several Destiny 2 creators, the complaint says.

For example, Bungie uses a vendor called “CSC Global” for brand protection. The complaint says the only Gmail account that’s confirmed by YouTube to issue DMCA takedowns on behalf of Bungie is [email protected]. The aim of the Rule 45 subpoena is to verify the identity of the alleged copyright abusers and the “[email protected]” account holder.

Google Does Not Want to Comply

Google refused to produce the needed documents, saying the initial subpoena and the lawsuit itself are legally improper. The company has a problem with the claim that the defendants (the copyright abusers) allegedly do not reside in the United States and the fact Bungie’s subpoena was not served upon its business in Ireland, where Google’s European consumer data is located.

Google also claims the information Bungie is searching for can be easily obtained through public sources and that the subpoena creates an “undue burden on a disinterested non-party.”

On the other hand, Bungie claims that finding the alleged fraudsters would be very simple with the help of Gmail user data. “Google’s refusal to respond also stands in the way of ascertaining the true scope of the harm caused by this fraud.”

As of now, the case is still ongoing.

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