Slew of copycat Kickstarters reported for DMCA infringement [Update]

Kickstarter is the place to go for crowdfunded projects, but from the multitudes of original content arise the occasional copycat productions, ripping off someone else's work. Kickstarter just issued its first transparency report which details all of the requests and claims in 2014 to take down campaigns. Out of the 22,252 68,668 projects submitted in 2014, 282 Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) claims were made on a total of 240 Kickstarter projects. Surprisingly, the crowdfunding company only pursued actions against 44% of those reported projects.

Kickstarter claims that it evaluates notices to see if the requests are valid or aimed at projects that qualify as fair use. When it did take action, it pulled content or entire projects from the site. Apparently there are 46 campaigns hidden from view due to DMCA claims.

The categories with the most DMCA claims were design, technology, and games, which are also the most populated communities. Although trademark claims aren't covered by DMCA, Kickstarter received 28 separate claims and removed 10 of the projects from the site.

It may take a lawsuit for Kickstarter to change their ways. The crowdsourcing company has to prove it makes a valid effort to respond to DMCA claims to maintain its "safe harbor" which protects the company if someone were to sue over infringement. With only 282 DMCA claims, it was still feasible to go over each claim by hand, but if Kickstarter were to ever become as big as You Tube, they would probably have to start taking down all reported content.

Update: Kickstarter has clarified that while 240 Kickstarters had had DMCA claims filed against them, as a percentage of a whole that amounts to only 0.3% of all the 68,668 projects launched in 2014. Kickstarter takes all of its DMCA claims seriously and through investigation uncovered that only 0.15% of the claims needed to be taken down, which represents an even lower number from their 68,668 projects.

VIA: Engadget