From Torrent Freak:
While millions of users upload videos to YouTube every day without expecting any reward, it’s possible for popular content to generate plenty of revenue through YouTube’s account monetization program.
New York resident Alfonzo Cutaia used the program last year when he sensed he had a hit video on his hands, but allegedly some news organizations didn’t play by the rules and now things have become messy.
Things began in 2014 when winter storm ‘Knife‘ buried parts of New York and surrounding areas under several feet of snow. On November 18, Cutaia was watching the storm coming over Lake Erie from his Buffalo office window when he decided to record events on his mobile phone.
Recognizing the potential for interest in his video, Cutaia uploaded his 32 second clip to YouTube. He gave it the title “Buffalo Lake Effect” and opted to generate revenue via YouTube’s monetization program. Cutaia selected “Standard YouTube License” and watched the hits roll in.
The recording did very well indeed. By the end of day one Cutaia’s video had been viewed more than 513,000 times. On day two things blew up with an additional 2.3 million hits and soon after the New York resident was receiving requests from news outlets – CBS, ABC, CNN, NBC, Reuters and AP – to use his footage.
But according to a lawsuit filed this week by Cutaia in a New York court, around November 18 Canada’s CBC aired the video online without permission, with a CBC logo as an overlay.