Update: WHAS11 Shuts Down Page One/’Ville Voice Videos

Four days ago, WHAS11-TV (“WHAS11 News”) filed a complaint with YouTube regarding the posting of video comparing, contrasting, discussing and criticizing reports and incidents from around Kentucky. At 7:10 P.M. that evening we received notice that YouTube removed our content.

We believe our use of WHAS11’s video falls under the “Fair Use” doctrine. The same doctrine under which WHAS11 presumably operates when they use video from other sources in their newscasts without express permission. The same doctrine under which thousands of other outlets like ours do the very same thing with the very same content.

Additionally, a number of stories have been broken and first reported by our websites only to be run as news on WHAS11 without any credit being given. Meaning the station looks to our web outlets as sources of major news which the station then reports as its own.

WHAS11 has never contacted us to request that we remove the content. (Though, one employee has contacted us in the past in a less than adult manner, we remind you.) The station’s decision to label us as copyright infringers is not only wrong and demeaning but it has resulted in a major inconvenience to us and our readers.

Today we filed a formal counter-notification (PDF Link) with YouTube in response to the removal of our video content. As stated, we believe our use of WHAS11’s video falls under the “Fair Use” provision of copyright law in the United States.

As we resolve this matter we want to let our readers know what’s going on. We also want you to be aware of the extent to which WHAS11 has gone to stifle free speech and crush journalistic criticism. In this age of new media the actual media is attempting to silence its chief critic by making it impossible to use its content in a contextual matter.

Any person of common sense and compassion would think WHAS11 could learn from past experience. It lost several key reporters and anchors as a direct result of poor management and leadership. It hasn’t been long ago that it lost a multi-million dollar battle in court for knowingly reporting lies and distortions. We sincerely hope the station takes its community-wide reputation into consideration before embarking on a mission against the ever-growing blogosphere.

This is absolutely unfortunate and saddening. It is unnecessary. We have not harmed WHAS11 in any way, have not inconvenienced the station financially and have not performed any act with ill intent. If anything we have given WHAS thousands of dollars worth of free publicity– even the occasional well-deserved praise.

YouTube has a legal responsibility to restore our mistakenly deleted content within 14 days. WHAS11 and parent company BELO have 10 days to further contest our use by taking us to court where media watchdogs and free speech attorneys galore are sure to come to our direct defense.

We don’t wish to be viewed as bullies. We believe we have operated completely within our rights under the law. We believe we have provided WHAS11 and other media outlets with nothing but professionalism and respect. We hope the station gives us the respect we deserve by providing us an apology.

Click here to read more about “Fair Use.”

The End is Nigh: Or what you missed this weekend

Thank goodness for terrible opponents. Jack Conway has an 18-point lead over Stan Lee in the latest polling. anyone surprised? We hope the Breck Girl is able to continue his career of hating everyone while raking in big insurance cash. [H-L]

Money talks. Mitch McConnell gives funds to company (SAE) he knows to be under investigation for bribery. A weapons company. How much money are we talking about here? $25 million. This from the guy who says money equals free speech. [H-L]

Nutjob in Elizabethtown? Who knew! Some guy wrote a letter to the editor about Steve Beshear loving gay money. And literally says (verbatim) that he “wants to kill more babies.” OMG. Go read it. You’ll pee yourself laughing. [News-Enterprise]

Commenters gone wild. An anonymous individual on Pat Crowley’s blog suggests Sally Denton’s Bluegrass Conspiracy is reason enough to paint all Democrats as more corrupt than Fletcher and other Republicans. Uh, maybe a handful of Democrats– some of whom are miraculously still in office and continually covering dirt up. All one really has to do is look back at the last eight years in the United States and then talk about corruption. [NKY Politics]

Budgetary hypocrisy. McConnell is going crazy over Democrats’ lack of action on the insane budget that’s being pushed through this year. He has the gall to accuse them of letting “the troops” down. Fails to mention he is one of the individuals responsible for sending “the troops” to Eye-Rack without body armor or any other basic protections. [C-J]

Ernie’s lights go out. Not only is Ernie Fletcher keen at preventing any sliver of honesty see the light of day? He’s busily telling the world his campaign can still turn the tide and win. For real. He thinks he can win. Nine days out and he seriously thinks he can win. [State-Journal]

Moment of truth. Ronnie Ellis expresses his weird bitterness over Fletcher’s impending loss. He “SHOULD” be winning, Ronnie? We get your point. But what the heck kind of journalism is that? [Daily Times]

Notes on the Ethics Case

We thought it’d be nice to point out something many in the press seem to be ignoring: the Executive Branch Ethics Commission is composed of four members who were all appointed by Ernie Fletcher. All of them. And it’s reasonable to believe they’re biased political allies of Fletcher’s.

How could there not be a strong appearance of bias? The Chairman, John Webb, testified before the Grand Jury in the merit hiring probe. That’s kind of a big deal.

Two Commission members publicly pledged to recuse themselves (John Quentin Wesley and Edward Patrick Moores) from any decision related to the merit hiring ordeal because of the outward appearance of bias. It’s a big enough deal for them to back off.

But Ronald Green, the newest member of the Commission, has refused to recuse himself. He was one of two special justices appointed by Fletcher when he took the Grand Jury’s authority to task before the state Supreme Court.

Interesting, eh? Two members say they don’t want to play the game. Mr. Webb testified before the Grand Jury. And Ernie’s right hand (Mr. Green) doesn’t believe there’s an appearance of bias. All four members are Republicans. They regularly contribute to Republican candidates. And they want to use an anonymous complaint to dig at the AG’s office for holding Ernie Fletcher responsible for his actions. And all this isn’t questioned by the media?

One would think based on the court’s decision (see it here) that it would tell the Ethics Commission to disappear. Nope. Not the case. After the court told the Ethics Commission (paraphrasing) that they’re doing some crazy junk and should get a grip, Judge Wingate gave the a-okay. They’re now meeting behind closed doors to discuss the contents of an anonymous complaint to which no one had the balls to sign their name.

Could the odor of Fletcher’s desperation get any more pungent?

McConnell Knew, Courier-Journal Chimes In

As we reported last night Senator Mitch McConnell lied to WHAS11’s Mark Hebert.

Could this story get any bigger? Talking Points Memo, Think Progress, Crooks & Liars, FireDogLake, CourtTV have all covered it. Now the Courier-Journal’s James Carroll gives it some legs.

WASHINGTON — Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell knew last week — at a time when he was denying it — that his staff had sent e-mails encouraging reporters to look into the background of a 12-year-old boy used by Democrats to support expansion of a health-care program.

In an interview Friday with WHAS-TV reporter Mark Hebert, the Kentucky Republican said his staff had not been involved in trying to push reporters to look into the financial situation of the boy’s family.

But McConnell’s communications director, Don Stewart, said in an interview Monday with The Courier-Journal that he had told McConnell about the Oct. 8 e-mails sometime around Thursday, the day before the interview with Hebert.

Ernest Lee Goes to Camp

Jesus Camp. Where he returns to preaching in just 20 days. Where he’ll be worshiping George W. Bush and praying for all gays to disappear.

His latest campaign commercial has been released. It’s a 60-second doozy that recycles some lies from Ernie’s past.

$1 billion deficit? Uh, that’s off by about $700 million. Alessi has pointed those facts out at least fifteen different times. Nice try, Gubnuh.




And you thought the lies were over… hahaha.

Welcome to all of our new readers from Talking Points Memo, ThinkProgress, Crooks&Liars, FireDogLake and CourtTV. We hope you enjoy our Governor as much as Mitch.

Environmental Insanity Featuring McConnell

Famed Olmstead Parks Conservancy will present Mitch McConnell with its top award on Friday, October 26 during the Roaring 20s Gala at the Henry Clay in Louisville. He’ll be receiving the Frederick Law Olmsted Award for Distinguished Leadership for his “contribution towards advancing our mission to restore, preserve and enhance Louisville’s Olmsted parks and parkways.”

Anyone else rolling their eyes at this laughable irony?

McConnell– the man who consistently receives a 0% rating from the League of Conservation Voters— is receiving an award from one of the most prominent parks and preservation organizations in the world.

Anti-McConnell groups have organized a demonstration to take place on Friday 10/26 from 5:00 – 8:30 P.M. at 3rd & Chestnut in Louisville.

Way to go Olmstead for drawing negative attention. We’re betting an entire bushel of apples that your membership could have come up with a much more deserving recipient of the award.