Inspired by Irving Azoff

In a recent RE/CODE interview, YouTube’s Lyor Cohen (who was excoriated earlier this week on our site by none other than Irving Azoff) suggested he had the problem of unauthorized posts of full-length albums well in hand, tackling "bad actors" thanks to his tech-savvy team:

So in my first week, I went to locate where the Content ID organization [the group that runs YouTube’s program that lets copyright owners find their stuff on the site, and either take it down or receive a cut of ad revenue it generates] was housed. And I found them in Zurich. So I got on the plane.

And I was blown. Away. Like, blown away. These were the world’s brightest, finest engineers. Young. Really young people. Who were thrilled to tackle bad actors.

When I told them about the albums, they said, “Yeah, they jumped over our Content ID by speeding up the tempo of the music, slightly. We’ve already got a solution for it.” I had them walk me through the process. I felt so proud that I could really talk to people in the industry that had this feeling about Content ID, and finding bad actors, and confidently say, “We’ve got a team that is dedicated to fixing this.”

Of course, it’s still incredibly easy to find full-length albums all over YouTube. Here’s Hotel California. Here’s Born to Run. Here’s Damn the Torpedoes. Here’s Morrison Hotel. Here’s Some Girls.

Which leads to one of two conclusions: (1) That Cohen was gullible enough to swallow a line of bullshit from his “amazing” team of experts, who took him for an expensive ride, or (2) He knows this “solution” is the Emperor’s New Clothes and will continue to hide behind safe harbor while feeding the same bullshit to the industry. Of course, it’s possible to be a moron and a liar, as those who’ve worked with Cohen keep reminding us.

But we get the feeling that stupidity wins the day here. In a way, Cohen is the perfect industry spokesman for YouTube, because you can believe he’s a dim enough bulb to have swallowed the nonsense he’s now peddling—and certainly that a group of tech kids could make his head spin in exchange for a Google-sized check.