GEMA censorship in Germany.

Any German speakers out there want to subtitle this short video by Nina Paley? In it, she tells, in English, how her film Sita Sings the Blues is currently being censored on YouTube Germany by GEMA, the German copyright collection agency (the ominous underworld connotations are unfortunately rather too appropriate in this case…).

EDIT July 15, 2011: Big Thank You to Cristobal for these subtitles!

We’d like to get this message wider circulation in Germany. We’d also appreciate it if GEMA and YouTube Germany would fix whatever misunderstanding caused them to censor the film in the first place! But since this surely isn’t the only film that this has happened to, it’s still important to spread the message that copyright restrictions inevitably result in censorship.

Note that we have already tried the official YouTube takedown counternotice procedure. It has resulted in exactly zero change: the film remains censored on YouTube Germany.

EDIT July 18, 2011: Hurray! Sita Sings The Blues is now, once again, viewable on German Youtube! Thanks to everyone who spread the word and got the story covered in outlets such as Der Spiegel. To learn more about the film, click on the Sita Distribution button at the top of this page.

2 Comments on "GEMA censorship in Germany."

  1. I am German and already transcribed the whole video message. If I could get someone to send the transcription to, or an explanation how to send in the subtitles, I would be glad to help!

    On another note: Although the link in the video itself doesn’t seem to work, I was able to get to the movie by just looking for “Sita Sings the Blues” over the YouTube searchbar. I live in Germany and I’m not using any proxy, and I was perfectly able to watch and enjoy the movie! I don’t know if this is supposed to be this way, or if the GEMA already reacted, but just wanted to let you guys know!

  2. The blocked (in Germany) link is here:

    It’s been brought to my attention that there’s another, commercial-packed version (posted by someone else, I don’t directly benefit) that people can view in Germany. I wonder if that’s because their ads make enough money to satisfy GEMA’s insane revenue requirements? The commercial-laden one was also posted considerably later than ours. At any event, my/’s video, the nonprofit one and the one specifically linked to the project, is blocked. I’m fine with others reposting/reusing Sita Sings the Blues, even commercially – but I’m not OK with mine being blocked, especially since I’m the one who paid through the nose to be able to share it legally!