I know that a request must be "under penalty of perjury". But that doesn't protect against fake information. Anyone, and especially parties outside US jurisdiction, (and even more so in countries which don't have an extradition treaty with the US) can contact or fill out a web form stating whatever is needed. They can even create a bot to do that automatically.

Why would someone do that?

Terrorism, racketeering and simple extortion, or just for fun / malice. The point is that removing content (even for a short while, not followed by any legal action) can be very damaging.

How is this different from other perjury threats?

When someone physically goes to court they take a chance, they can be arrested. It's also much more resource intensive. But fraud over the internet is much less hazardous (for the felon), and much easier.


Apparently the question wasn't clear enough. I know that in a "normal" case, there is enforceable protection. That's the "perjury" part. That's why I put the word enforceable in quotes. My question is about the cases I mentioned above. I'm asking if there's any deterrent for those who give false information about themselves or who are not in the US. All as stated above.

2 Answers 2


The victim of a bad-faith takedown notice can pursue a civil claim against the person filing the notice. Such actions have sometimes led to sizable rewards.

Diebold, for instance, paid out $125,000 after a judge found that it had violated the DMCA by submitting a takedown request against a group that published internal Diebold e-mails acknowledging problems with the company's electronic voting machines. Online Policy Grp. v. Diebold, Inc., 337 F. Supp. 2d 1195 (N.D. Cal. 2004).

  • Also, a takedown request isn't permanent. If it is not followed up with a lawsuit within the requisite time frame, the taken down material can be reinstated.
    – ohwilleke
    Oct 17, 2018 at 21:27
  • But that depends on how the host sees it. There is no law saying they gave to allow its reinstatement.
    – Stilez
    Oct 17, 2018 at 21:42
  • Actually, as I understand it, the DMCA requires that if a valid counter notice is sent, and the original sender of the takedown does not respond that suit is being filed within 10 days, the service provider must restore the content within 14 days, or be liable to the original poster. Oct 17, 2018 at 22:01
  • @DavidSiegel However, "liable to the original poster" may mean nothing. Many sites host material for free and have terms saying they can take down material at their discretion. I'd expect a contract that said the host would definitely reinstate material following a DMCA response to be fairly expensive. Oct 17, 2018 at 22:15
  • 1
    If the host is being paid to host content, and fails to reinstate the content after a valid counter notice has been sent and no suit field within the 10 days, it is probably in breech of its contract. The DMCA says only that the host cannot be held liable for taking down the content in accord with DMCA procedures, but if it fails to restore the content it loses this protection Oct 17, 2018 at 22:24

If a bad-faith takedown is filed with a false name and false contact info, I don't see how action is to be taken. I suppose that an investigation might reveal who actually sent the takedown, but in practice i don't see who would be both able and willing to make such an investigation, much less then act on its result. I doubt that any law-enforcement agency would.

If a bad-faith takedown is filed by a party outside US jurisdiction, then a suit would need to be brought in a jurisdiction that can reach the entity that filed the takedown. I don't know which, if any jurisdictions would allow such a suit, but I suspect not all would.

The original poster of content may have no practical recourse in either case.

  • Why do you think action is taken by anyone but the dude who filled in a web form? The video is taken down immediately regardless of legal anything. Feb 20, 2019 at 20:00
  • I don't, in many cases. I was describing what action might possibly be taken, and why in the case in the question it was unlikely. Note that if the content owner files a counter notice, content should go back up fairly quickly. Feb 20, 2019 at 20:20
  • But until there is data supporting that videos go back up after counter notice, reasonably this should also be considered by you an action possibly taken. And there will never be any such data publicly available, so it's just an assumption by you that you can never hope to support. Even if you yourself upload a video, get it taken down, file a counter notice, and get it republished, it will all be hearsay. Correct? Mar 6, 2019 at 23:26

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .