The Destiny developer has also voiced their disappointment with YouTube's lousy customer service.
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Bungie has filed a lawsuit against the people responsible for last week's "fraudulent" YouTube takedowns. The studio also very clear voiced their disappointment against YouTube's DMCA process as a part of the lawsuit against 10 John Doe defendants that were accused of issuing takedown notices against numerous Destiny 2 videos, including many that were officially uploaded by Bungie.

In the lawsuit (PDF link provided by Ars Technica), which was filed Friday in the US District Court for the Western District of Washington, Bungie says that the removal of community-created videos caused "significant reputational and economic damage." Bungie also notes that YouTube's DMCA claim system is "easily gamed" and cites it as the primary reason that these fraudulent claims were successful in the first place.

In other words, as far as YouTube is concerned, any person, anywhere in the world, can issue takedown notices on behalf of any rights holder, anywhere. A disgruntled infringer or a competitive content producer, for example, can issue takedown notices purportedly on behalf of Disney, or Fox, or Universal—or even Google itself. All they need to do is: (1) fill out the video removal form... (2) have a Google account—including, upon information and belief, one created that same day and with fake information; and (3) fill out information and click verification buttons fraudulently certifying that they have the right to submit the takedown request, with no verification done by YouTube.
Neither YouTube nor Google were named as defendants in the lawsuit. However, both were mentioned numerous times in Bungie's complaint. The 10 John Doe defendants have not yet been identified yet due to "the Byzantine procedural labyrinth Google required before it would address the fraud its users were committing, let alone identify who its fraudsters were.[/quote]

The fraudulent takedown notices were allegedly sent in retaliation by some Destiny 2 players that received legitimate takedown notices by Bungie prior to all of this happening. The perpetrators then targeted other YouTube creators who had received official Bungie takedown requests and then sent emails to victims saying that the official Bungie notices were also fraudulent.

Bungie typically allows for Destiny related uploads so long as the videos contain "substantial 'player-created content'." They prohibit uploads that are just straight uploads of Bungie intellectual property like trailers and cutscenes. The studio also doesn't allow for uploading "songs from Bungie soundtracks or ripped from the game files of Destiny 2."

In early March, 41 legitimate DMCA takedowns were issued on Bungie's behalf. All of them were "related to music from Destiny 2's original soundtracks." These legitimate takedowns included the John Doe defendants. On March 17, the fraudulent DMCA takedowns began with the defendants identifying themselves as "Bungie, Inc." or "as Bungie's authorized agents."

Bungie said its attempt to solve the problem was "complicated by the fact that while YouTube has a form that allows anyone to claim to represent a copyright holder and issue copyright strikes, it has no dedicated mechanism for copyright holders who are being impersonated to let YouTube know about the DMCA fraud."
Ars Technica requested a statement from YouTube and, as expected, the statement issued by the YouTube spokesperson is about as by the books as a response can get from a big company.

"We take abuse of our copyright takedown process seriously and terminate tens of thousands of accounts every year for violating our policies, which prohibit submitting false information in a takedown request. We'll continue our work to prevent abuse of our systems, and we're committed to taking appropriate action against those who knowingly misuse our tools."
Bungie uses CSC Global to send out their actual takedown notices, which are only sent out after being requested by Bungie's legal department. Upon hearing about initial fraudulent takedowns, CSC Global had issued a retraction of the takedown. However, on Monday, March 21, YouTube had denied the retraction request "because the retraction notice was not sent from the same email that had issued the initial fraudulent takedown notice." The defendants easily tricked YouTube by using emails sent from (name) addresses. This is actually the same email address template used by official CSC Global communications.

Bungie notes that on March 22 at 3:18PM, Google provided an update.

"It had terminated the accounts that submitted the fraudulent requests and all fraudulent submissions would be reversed, but Google would not share any information identifying who the fraudulent users were, including channel identifiers, email addresses, or other identifying information, without a law enforcement request or civil process. Fortunately for the people whose videos were targeted by the Fraudulent Takedown Notices, Bungie has the financial resources to begin that civil process in order to meet Google's requirements."
Though the people on the receiving end of the fraudulent takedown notices are unable to fight back legally, Bungie is doing so on their behalf as they have the financial means to do so. Fighting a legal battle against DMCA claims is costly and is the last step offered if submitting a counterclaim is unsuccessful.

Bungie is seeking $150,000 for each of the 41 fraudulent takedown notices that were issued. The studio says that they are "entitled to damages and injunctive relief, including enhanced statutory damages." Bungie has also accused the defendants of business defamation, violating the Washington Consumer Protection Act, and breach of contract by violating the Destiny 2 software license agreement.