Viacom works with Abernathy on Google lawsuit

NEW YORK: Viacom is working with Abernathy MacGregor on the company's billion-dollar lawsuit against Google.

NEW YORK: Viacom is working with Abernathy MacGregor on the company's billion-dollar lawsuit against Google.

Jeremy Zweig, Viacom's VP of corporate communications, said the company has had a longstanding relationship with Abernathy, and that they are involved in an advisory capacity.

The lawsuit alleges that YouTube has committed "massive intentional copyright infringement" by showing Viacom entertainment content for free, and failing to filter it from their site.

Google is handling all of its communications in-house, according to David Krane, director of corporate communications.

"Our argument to the public is that we have tried to negotiate an agreement with Google and YouTube for some time," said Zweig, "and unfortunately this was the measure that they pushed us into."

He said the company has been open in speaking with the press about the circumstances of the suit, and that Viacom will continue to speak to the media as the case progresses.

Zweig declined to comment on the quality of the coverage so far.

Google declined to comment, beyond a statement, attributed to Kent Walker, general counsel: "YouTube has become even more popular since we took down Viacom's material.  We think that's a testament to the draw of the user-generated content on YouTube.  We've been very successful forging thousands of successful partnerships with content owners -- like Warner Music, Sony/BMG, Universal Music, BBC, and the NBA -- interested in finding new audiences for their programming...."

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