Since there are 500 hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute, I should not be surprised that it them four years to catch up with my illicit, community guidelines breaking activity:

I got a strike from YouTube. I am a BAD DOG. So BAD.
I got a strike from YouTube. I am a BAD DOG. So BAD.

I had a hard time even remembering the video, but it was July 2012, meaning it was something I did while teaching a summer course version of DS106 at the University of Mary Washington — that was the summer of Camp Magic McGuffin. Our week 7 unit on video editing including the offending video (it was later folded into the DS106 guidebook).

I cannot see the video anymore because it’s nuked, but reviewed it yesterday while writing a failed appeal. In the video I specifically mention it being as part of the DS106 course, and I demonstrate how to download a clip from the summer classic movie Meatballs using what was then recommended tools KeepVid and PwnYouTube.

Okay, YouTube, As I know, your Community Guidelines describe which content you allow – and don’t allow – on YouTube. I am curious which one I stepped over.

Respect the YouTube community
We’re not asking for the kind of respect reserved for nuns, the elderly, and brain surgeons. Just don’t abuse the site. Every cool, new community feature on YouTube involves a certain level of trust. We trust you to be responsible, and millions of users respect that trust. Please be one of them.

Cannot see how I was dis-respectful in the video. Huh?

Nudity or sexual content
YouTube is not for pornography or sexually explicit content. If this describes your video, even if it’s a video of yourself, don’t post it on YouTube. Also, be advised that we work closely with law enforcement and we report child exploitation.

No nudity or sex in my screencast. I showed my students how to use web tools.


Harmful or dangerous content
Don’t post videos that encourage others to do things that might cause them to get badly hurt, especially kids. Videos showing such harmful or dangerous acts may get age-restricted or removed depending on their severity.

It was a screencast, no human lives were threatened. Heck, you don;t even need to wear a helmet.

Okay, moving on.

Violent or graphic content
It’s not okay to post violent or gory content that’s primarily intended to be shocking, sensational, or disrespectful. If posting graphic content in a news or documentary context, please be mindful to provide enough information to help people understand what’s going on in the video. Don’t encourage others to commit specific acts of violence.

No blood, dismemberment, no gore at all. It was a bunch of computer screens.

Maybe something else?

Respect copyright. Only upload videos that you made or that you’re authorized to use. This means don’t upload videos you didn’t make, or use content in your videos that someone else owns the copyright to, such as music tracks, snippets of copyrighted programs, or videos made by other users, without necessary authorizations.

I am saluting copyright.

I get flagged for copyright on a regular basis, usually they are allowed to stay on YouTube. I was showing web sites- I might have briefly shown 2 seconds of a clip in the screen (it was a screen that is YouTube’s) of the movie Meatballs- but its a screen on YouTube.

What else ya got?

Hateful content
Our products are platforms for free expression. But we don’t support content that promotes or condones violence against individuals or groups based on race or ethnic origin, religion, disability, gender, age, nationality, veteran status, or sexual orientation/gender identity, or whose primary purpose is inciting hatred on the basis of these core characteristics. This can be a delicate balancing act, but if the primary purpose is to attack a protected group, the content crosses the line.

Not even close. There aren’t even people mentioned or depicted in the video, only web sites.

Anything else?

Things like predatory behavior, stalking, threats, harassment, intimidation, invading privacy, revealing other people’s personal information, and inciting others to commit violent acts or to violate the Terms of Use are taken very seriously. Anyone caught doing these things may be permanently banned from YouTube

Ditto. There was nothing threatening in my video.

SO that’s it. What exactly did my video do?

Well, YouTube owns YouTube and I guess they do not have to tell me such details. I can guess they are suggesting I was promoting piracy by showing people how to use YouTube downloaders. I did not encourage people to pirate videos, this was part of a class where students are remixing videos to learn how to edit and create remixes.

And it’s not like it’s hard to find YouTube downloaders, is YouTube not aware that this is a thing? Why do they even allow these sites to work?


Look, I really do not care if they remove my four year old screen cast video. What I do care about is being accused of something wrong, without any specifics as to what it was I did wrong.

Oh but I was able to appeal. I was given like 240 characters in a single line text form where I explained that I was not encouraging piracy, but teaching students how to edit/remix video.

I got word today; the wording of this is right out of the Absolute Iron Faceless Review of Facebook:


I have read every shred of the Community Guidelines and come up empty on which ones I peed on. And they will not tell me. All I get is a verdict.


I am a BAD DOG on YouTube. They say so, therefore it must be true. They know everything, me? Nada.

Still a BAD DOG

flickr photo shared by cogdogblog under a Creative Commons ( BY ) license

One more strike, and I might be sent to the dog house.

Top / Featured Image: One half of my coat hooks; because of cosmic balance, there is a nearby Good Dog. My flickr photo shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license

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Profile Picture for Alan Levine aka CogDog
An early 90s builder of the web and blogging Alan Levine barks at on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person.

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