Google Makes Anti-piracy a Priority for YouTube

Google, under fire for the massive amount of pirated video on its YouTube site, has set the offering of copyright protection technologies as one of the companyis highest priorities according to USA TODAY on Friday.

"We are definitely committed to (offering copyright protection technologies)," Google Chief Executive Officer Eric Schmidt said in an interview. "It is one of the companyis highest priorities," he said. "It is going to roll out very soon ... It is not far away."

Google recently lost an important business deal with Viacom to deliver a portfolio of licensed TV programs to customers, and hundreds of millions of ad dollars were at stake. Earlier this month, Viacom demanded YouTube remove more than 100,000 Viacom video clips from the site after the two sides failed to reach a distribution agreement. Viacom eventually struck a deal with Joost instead.

Stung by its inability to check the copyright basis of files that are uploaded, Google is developing technology to help media companies identify pirated videos uploaded by users.

Mr. Schmidt declined to give a time frame when the tools would cover all users and explained that it takes time to roll out such a sophisticated technology.

At one time, Apple was being urged to buy YouTube when it was up for sale. Appleis tendency to focus on identifiable customer technology and user interface issues and not be all things to all people led Apple to wisely steer clear of potential YouTube pitfalls.