AVGN Loses, Regains YouTube Account

Angry Video Game Nerd LogoNote: This article has to do with a 2008 incident where the AVGN YouTube account was banned from YouTube and restored. It does not have information on the most recent (2012) banning of the account. I will update it as I learn more.

James Rolfe, best known as his persona the “Angry Video Game Nerd“, had his YouTube account suspended for nearly 24 hours following a mistake by one of the sites he partners with to display his videos.

Rolfe, who became famous for his angry, and often vulgar, reviews of classic video games was one of the most popular directors on YouTube and is the tenth most subscribed to user on the site. His Channel has over 130,000 subscribers and over 6.5 million views.

When the suspension was discovered in the evening of the 19th, speculation mounted about the cause. Several commenters looked at the matter with suspicion and tried to blame a competing video game reviewer. Others attempted to blame YouTube accusing them of banning the account to further their own agenda.

These conspiracy theories were furthered by the previous closures of other accounts including Guru Larry and PlayItBogart, both also video game reviewers

However, other evidence pointed to a likely mistake by GameTrailers, a site Rolfe is affiliated with.

Although Rolfe had not been posting full videos to his YouTube account for some time, he had been posting trailers of his new episodes. When the account was down, most of his videos carried a generic “removed for a terms of service” violation”. However, one of the trailers had an error message indicating that it was removed due to a copyright complaint by GameTrailers.

GameTrailers, whose own YouTube account was suspended as well, was quiet during the controversy. However, when Rolfe’s account was restored, it was revealed that it had indeed been an error by GameTrailers that resulted in the removal.

As of the evening of the 20th, Rolfe’s account has been restored and everything seems to have returned to normal. However, it was a day that many fans of Rolfe’s will never likely forget.

Lessons to be Gleaned

The simple fact is that, when it comes to DMCA notices, mistakes happen. This is especially true when you are working for a company that may have more than one person involved in sending out takedown notices.

However, these mistakes need to be kept to an absolute minimum to avoid these kinds of problems. Not only did the incident hurt Rolfe by denying him access to his YouTube account, but also damaged YouTube’s reputation, caused something of a miniature revolt from other YouTube members, hurt the reputation of other reviewers, even though they had nothing to do with the suspension.

Worst of all, it resulted in the suspension of not just GameTrailer’s own account, but the account that provides some of the best promotion for them.

When sending DMCA notices, it is important to always make sure that the notice is valid, that it is for a use that you definitely intend to stop. Though they are very easy to file, they are typically very difficult to undo.

If you have someone else file notices on your behalf, ensure that either you have full editorial control over the action taken or that the person has a full understanding of the nuances of how your site works and what reuse is permitted.

This no easy task, but it is important to both ensure the effectiveness of your DMCA process and that incidents like this one do not happen to you.

49 comments
irate gamer
irate gamer

he sucks i wipe my ass with him. bangalang

irate gamer
irate gamer

he sucks i wipe my ass with him. bangalang

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Well, if you use U.S.-based services, such as YouTube, or U.S.-based search engines, such as Google, you are just as subject to the DMCA as any U.S. citizen. That's the nature of the law...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Well, if you use U.S.-based services, such as YouTube, or U.S.-based search engines, such as Google, you are just as subject to the DMCA as any U.S. citizen. That's the nature of the law...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Well, if you use U.S.-based services, such as YouTube, or U.S.-based search engines, such as Google, you are just as subject to the DMCA as any U.S. citizen. That's the nature of the law...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Well, if you use U.S.-based services, such as YouTube, or U.S.-based search engines, such as Google, you are just as subject to the DMCA as any U.S. citizen. That's the nature of the law...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Well, if you use U.S.-based services, such as YouTube, or U.S.-based search engines, such as Google, you are just as subject to the DMCA as any U.S. citizen. That's the nature of the law...

icarid
icarid

and this is why we don't have to the DMCA in Canada (though i am waiting for our government to blatantly sell us out with a renamed bill c-61

icarid
icarid

and this is why we don't have to the DMCA in Canada (though i am waiting for our government to blatantly sell us out with a renamed bill c-61

icarid
icarid

and this is why we don't have to the DMCA in Canada (though i am waiting for our government to blatantly sell us out with a renamed bill c-61

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Justin: I am just username plagiarismtoday there. I only have two videos up there right now. One I did for this site and one for my haunted house. More will be coming soon though.

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Justin: I am just username plagiarismtoday there. I only have two videos up there right now. One I did for this site and one for my haunted house. More will be coming soon though.

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Justin: I am just username plagiarismtoday there. I only have two videos up there right now. One I did for this site and one for my haunted house. More will be coming soon though.

Justin
Justin

OH really? Got a link to your channel? I'd like to see some of your videos if you have any. I might even sign up myself! :)

Justin
Justin

OH really? Got a link to your channel? I'd like to see some of your videos if you have any. I might even sign up myself! :)

Justin
Justin

OH really? Got a link to your channel? I'd like to see some of your videos if you have any. I might even sign up myself! :)

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Justin: The flagging system is interesting. On most hosts, you can not have a work removed for copyright infringement without a DMCA notice from the copyright holder. YouTube seems to allow group think to take over and let anyone report copyright infringement. From what I understand, if enough users flag something as infringing, they will remove it regardless of whether or not a DMCA notice is filed. This is completely counter to how U.S. law is supposed to work and that is supposed to help avoid these kinds of mistakes.

Granted, the Nerd was the victim of an actual DMCA, but that's not the point. I agree with you that far more content is removed erroneously due to flagging and YouTube "wars". Sad, but true.

It is far too easy to get banned from YouTube though, one of the reasons I post videos to blip.tv instead...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Justin: The flagging system is interesting. On most hosts, you can not have a work removed for copyright infringement without a DMCA notice from the copyright holder. YouTube seems to allow group think to take over and let anyone report copyright infringement. From what I understand, if enough users flag something as infringing, they will remove it regardless of whether or not a DMCA notice is filed. This is completely counter to how U.S. law is supposed to work and that is supposed to help avoid these kinds of mistakes.

Granted, the Nerd was the victim of an actual DMCA, but that's not the point. I agree with you that far more content is removed erroneously due to flagging and YouTube "wars". Sad, but true.

It is far too easy to get banned from YouTube though, one of the reasons I post videos to blip.tv instead...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Justin: The flagging system is interesting. On most hosts, you can not have a work removed for copyright infringement without a DMCA notice from the copyright holder. YouTube seems to allow group think to take over and let anyone report copyright infringement. From what I understand, if enough users flag something as infringing, they will remove it regardless of whether or not a DMCA notice is filed. This is completely counter to how U.S. law is supposed to work and that is supposed to help avoid these kinds of mistakes.Granted, the Nerd was the victim of an actual DMCA, but that's not the point. I agree with you that far more content is removed erroneously due to flagging and YouTube "wars". Sad, but true.It is far too easy to get banned from YouTube though, one of the reasons I post videos to blip.tv instead...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Justin: The flagging system is interesting. On most hosts, you can not have a work removed for copyright infringement without a DMCA notice from the copyright holder. YouTube seems to allow group think to take over and let anyone report copyright infringement. From what I understand, if enough users flag something as infringing, they will remove it regardless of whether or not a DMCA notice is filed. This is completely counter to how U.S. law is supposed to work and that is supposed to help avoid these kinds of mistakes.Granted, the Nerd was the victim of an actual DMCA, but that's not the point. I agree with you that far more content is removed erroneously due to flagging and YouTube "wars". Sad, but true.It is far too easy to get banned from YouTube though, one of the reasons I post videos to blip.tv instead...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Justin: The flagging system is interesting. On most hosts, you can not have a work removed for copyright infringement without a DMCA notice from the copyright holder. YouTube seems to allow group think to take over and let anyone report copyright infringement. From what I understand, if enough users flag something as infringing, they will remove it regardless of whether or not a DMCA notice is filed. This is completely counter to how U.S. law is supposed to work and that is supposed to help avoid these kinds of mistakes.

Granted, the Nerd was the victim of an actual DMCA, but that's not the point. I agree with you that far more content is removed erroneously due to flagging and YouTube "wars". Sad, but true.

It is far too easy to get banned from YouTube though, one of the reasons I post videos to blip.tv instead...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Justin: The flagging system is interesting. On most hosts, you can not have a work removed for copyright infringement without a DMCA notice from the copyright holder. YouTube seems to allow group think to take over and let anyone report copyright infringement. From what I understand, if enough users flag something as infringing, they will remove it regardless of whether or not a DMCA notice is filed. This is completely counter to how U.S. law is supposed to work and that is supposed to help avoid these kinds of mistakes.
Granted, the Nerd was the victim of an actual DMCA, but that's not the point. I agree with you that far more content is removed erroneously due to flagging and YouTube "wars". Sad, but true.
It is far too easy to get banned from YouTube though, one of the reasons I post videos to blip.tv instead...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Justin: The flagging system is interesting. On most hosts, you can not have a work removed for copyright infringement without a DMCA notice from the copyright holder. YouTube seems to allow group think to take over and let anyone report copyright infringement. From what I understand, if enough users flag something as infringing, they will remove it regardless of whether or not a DMCA notice is filed. This is completely counter to how U.S. law is supposed to work and that is supposed to help avoid these kinds of mistakes. Granted, the Nerd was the victim of an actual DMCA, but that's not the point. I agree with you that far more content is removed erroneously due to flagging and YouTube "wars". Sad, but true. It is far too easy to get banned from YouTube though, one of the reasons I post videos to blip.tv instead...

Justin
Justin

"Mistakes" like that are made all the time. I mean, you have no idea how people have been suspended from Youtube for speaking their mind. Let me be specific here. If you piss off enough people on Youtube, they'll flag your videos for copyright infringement. Here's the kicker, most of the people who make controversial videos has some copyright material on at least one of their videos. That's enough to get somebody suspended. ON the other hand, you do have people who are suspended for copyright infringement, when they have no copyrighted material on it. It's bullshit. If for some reason, somebody wants to get their channel suspended, all they have to do is tell Muslim jokes, and debate the religion of Islam.

Justin
Justin

"Mistakes" like that are made all the time. I mean, you have no idea how people have been suspended from Youtube for speaking their mind. Let me be specific here. If you piss off enough people on Youtube, they'll flag your videos for copyright infringement. Here's the kicker, most of the people who make controversial videos has some copyright material on at least one of their videos. That's enough to get somebody suspended. ON the other hand, you do have people who are suspended for copyright infringement, when they have no copyrighted material on it. It's bullshit. If for some reason, somebody wants to get their channel suspended, all they have to do is tell Muslim jokes, and debate the religion of Islam.

Justin
Justin

"Mistakes" like that are made all the time. I mean, you have no idea how people have been suspended from Youtube for speaking their mind. Let me be specific here. If you piss off enough people on Youtube, they'll flag your videos for copyright infringement. Here's the kicker, most of the people who make controversial videos has some copyright material on at least one of their videos. That's enough to get somebody suspended. ON the other hand, you do have people who are suspended for copyright infringement, when they have no copyrighted material on it. It's bullshit. If for some reason, somebody wants to get their channel suspended, all they have to do is tell Muslim jokes, and debate the religion of Islam.

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: I think I've seen every video as well and check every week for new ones. It's something of an addiction...

The real problem though is that I've started adopting some of his lines into my daily life. I think you can see the issue there...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: I think I've seen every video as well and check every week for new ones. It's something of an addiction...

The real problem though is that I've started adopting some of his lines into my daily life. I think you can see the issue there...

Patrick
Patrick

Yeah, totally! hehe. :) Big fan. I've seen every video.

Patrick
Patrick

Yeah, totally! hehe. :) Big fan. I've seen every video.

Patrick
Patrick

Yeah, totally! hehe. :) Big fan. I've seen every video.

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: I think I've seen every video as well and check every week for new ones. It's something of an addiction...The real problem though is that I've started adopting some of his lines into my daily life. I think you can see the issue there...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: I think I've seen every video as well and check every week for new ones. It's something of an addiction...The real problem though is that I've started adopting some of his lines into my daily life. I think you can see the issue there...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: Really? Pardon my surprise but I didn't peg you as a fan. Looks like we'll have something else to talk about at SXSW next year!

Justin: He's the angriest gamer you've ever heard, he's the angry Nintendo nerd, he's the angry Atari/Sega nerd, he's the Angry Video Game Nerd.

Ok, the joke was lame, but Patrick is laughing right now...

Don't feel too bad about not knowing him though, he's got a niche that's pretty small, it just happens to strongly appeal to YouTube users. He also got a huge boost form his partnerships with ScrewAttack and GameTrailers (though some would argue that the "boost"went the other way with ScrewAttack).

But go check him out, if you think you might find humor in vulgar reviews of bad classic video games. It is a laugh riot. My personal favorites are Bible Games, Master Chu and the Drunkard Hu, the Power Glove and the most recent two. They're all pretty good though, despite the fact that the first two are very different from the rest.

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: Really? Pardon my surprise but I didn't peg you as a fan. Looks like we'll have something else to talk about at SXSW next year!

Justin: He's the angriest gamer you've ever heard, he's the angry Nintendo nerd, he's the angry Atari/Sega nerd, he's the Angry Video Game Nerd.

Ok, the joke was lame, but Patrick is laughing right now...

Don't feel too bad about not knowing him though, he's got a niche that's pretty small, it just happens to strongly appeal to YouTube users. He also got a huge boost form his partnerships with ScrewAttack and GameTrailers (though some would argue that the "boost"went the other way with ScrewAttack).

But go check him out, if you think you might find humor in vulgar reviews of bad classic video games. It is a laugh riot. My personal favorites are Bible Games, Master Chu and the Drunkard Hu, the Power Glove and the most recent two. They're all pretty good though, despite the fact that the first two are very different from the rest.

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: I think I've seen every video as well and check every week for new ones. It's something of an addiction... The real problem though is that I've started adopting some of his lines into my daily life. I think you can see the issue there...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: I think I've seen every video as well and check every week for new ones. It's something of an addiction...

The real problem though is that I've started adopting some of his lines into my daily life. I think you can see the issue there...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: I think I've seen every video as well and check every week for new ones. It's something of an addiction...
The real problem though is that I've started adopting some of his lines into my daily life. I think you can see the issue there...

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: Really? Pardon my surprise but I didn't peg you as a fan. Looks like we'll have something else to talk about at SXSW next year!Justin: He's the angriest gamer you've ever heard, he's the angry Nintendo nerd, he's the angry Atari/Sega nerd, he's the Angry Video Game Nerd.Ok, the joke was lame, but Patrick is laughing right now...Don't feel too bad about not knowing him though, he's got a niche that's pretty small, it just happens to strongly appeal to YouTube users. He also got a huge boost form his partnerships with ScrewAttack and GameTrailers (though some would argue that the "boost"went the other way with ScrewAttack).But go check him out, if you think you might find humor in vulgar reviews of bad classic video games. It is a laugh riot. My personal favorites are Bible Games, Master Chu and the Drunkard Hu, the Power Glove and the most recent two. They're all pretty good though, despite the fact that the first two are very different from the rest.

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: Really? Pardon my surprise but I didn't peg you as a fan. Looks like we'll have something else to talk about at SXSW next year!Justin: He's the angriest gamer you've ever heard, he's the angry Nintendo nerd, he's the angry Atari/Sega nerd, he's the Angry Video Game Nerd.Ok, the joke was lame, but Patrick is laughing right now...Don't feel too bad about not knowing him though, he's got a niche that's pretty small, it just happens to strongly appeal to YouTube users. He also got a huge boost form his partnerships with ScrewAttack and GameTrailers (though some would argue that the "boost"went the other way with ScrewAttack).But go check him out, if you think you might find humor in vulgar reviews of bad classic video games. It is a laugh riot. My personal favorites are Bible Games, Master Chu and the Drunkard Hu, the Power Glove and the most recent two. They're all pretty good though, despite the fact that the first two are very different from the rest.

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: Really? Pardon my surprise but I didn't peg you as a fan. Looks like we'll have something else to talk about at SXSW next year!

Justin: He's the angriest gamer you've ever heard, he's the angry Nintendo nerd, he's the angry Atari/Sega nerd, he's the Angry Video Game Nerd.

Ok, the joke was lame, but Patrick is laughing right now...

Don't feel too bad about not knowing him though, he's got a niche that's pretty small, it just happens to strongly appeal to YouTube users. He also got a huge boost form his partnerships with ScrewAttack and GameTrailers (though some would argue that the "boost"went the other way with ScrewAttack).

But go check him out, if you think you might find humor in vulgar reviews of bad classic video games. It is a laugh riot. My personal favorites are Bible Games, Master Chu and the Drunkard Hu, the Power Glove and the most recent two. They're all pretty good though, despite the fact that the first two are very different from the rest.

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: Really? Pardon my surprise but I didn't peg you as a fan. Looks like we'll have something else to talk about at SXSW next year!
Justin: He's the angriest gamer you've ever heard, he's the angry Nintendo nerd, he's the angry Atari/Sega nerd, he's the Angry Video Game Nerd.
Ok, the joke was lame, but Patrick is laughing right now...
Don't feel too bad about not knowing him though, he's got a niche that's pretty small, it just happens to strongly appeal to YouTube users. He also got a huge boost form his partnerships with ScrewAttack and GameTrailers (though some would argue that the "boost"went the other way with ScrewAttack).
But go check him out, if you think you might find humor in vulgar reviews of bad classic video games. It is a laugh riot. My personal favorites are Bible Games, Master Chu and the Drunkard Hu, the Power Glove and the most recent two. They're all pretty good though, despite the fact that the first two are very different from the rest.

Jonathan Bailey
Jonathan Bailey

Patrick: Really? Pardon my surprise but I didn't peg you as a fan. Looks like we'll have something else to talk about at SXSW next year! Justin: He's the angriest gamer you've ever heard, he's the angry Nintendo nerd, he's the angry Atari/Sega nerd, he's the Angry Video Game Nerd. Ok, the joke was lame, but Patrick is laughing right now... Don't feel too bad about not knowing him though, he's got a niche that's pretty small, it just happens to strongly appeal to YouTube users. He also got a huge boost form his partnerships with ScrewAttack and GameTrailers (though some would argue that the "boost"went the other way with ScrewAttack). But go check him out, if you think you might find humor in vulgar reviews of bad classic video games. It is a laugh riot. My personal favorites are Bible Games, Master Chu and the Drunkard Hu, the Power Glove and the most recent two. They're all pretty good though, despite the fact that the first two are very different from the rest.

Justinfh2Point0/JustinsVision
Justinfh2Point0/JustinsVision

This guy has over 130,000 subscribers?! Holy shit that's a lot! and I never heard of this guy! I should check this guy's channel out since he reviews video games. It's funny how the company that he works with got his channel suspended. I could totally go for more subscribers on my channel. Although 130,000 is way too much for me. Hell, 1000 subscribers is too much for me....but that won't be happening anytime soon. :(

Justinfh2Point0/JustinsVision
Justinfh2Point0/JustinsVision

This guy has over 130,000 subscribers?! Holy shit that's a lot! and I never heard of this guy! I should check this guy's channel out since he reviews video games. It's funny how the company that he works with got his channel suspended. I could totally go for more subscribers on my channel. Although 130,000 is way too much for me. Hell, 1000 subscribers is too much for me....but that won't be happening anytime soon. :(

Justinfh2Point0/JustinsVision
Justinfh2Point0/JustinsVision

This guy has over 130,000 subscribers?! Holy shit that's a lot! and I never heard of this guy! I should check this guy's channel out since he reviews video games. It's funny how the company that he works with got his channel suspended. I could totally go for more subscribers on my channel. Although 130,000 is way too much for me. Hell, 1000 subscribers is too much for me....but that won't be happening anytime soon. :(

Patrick
Patrick

Interesting stuff. :) I'm a big fan of the nerd! :)

Patrick
Patrick

Interesting stuff. :) I'm a big fan of the nerd! :)

Patrick
Patrick

Interesting stuff. :) I'm a big fan of the nerd! :)