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Legality of producer worksEdit
Plagiarism and other forms of copyright infringement have caused both drama and serious consequences for those involved. Plagiarism and copyright infringement often overlap each other; it is only partially innocent when it affects the individuals who are unaware of what they or anyone else has done. Some specific cases of plagiarism or direct copyright violation, however, have become particularly famous.
Examples of direct violation of this level issue are the numerous Lady Gaga covers that use as background music her song "Bad Romance". This is one of the most common occurrences of this level of act, and even when granted that the uploader acknowledges the owner, some labels such as Sony Entertainment have been known to defend their property and pull the video. Karen-T, Crypton Future Media's own label, tends to only pull PVs and videos that have been re-uploaded from their original source.
Usually, when fans commit acts such as the usage of illegal VOCALOIDs, other VOCALOID fans may drop the license holder an alert of what videos the user has uploaded. The result may be that the entire uploaders account ends up being removed or closed. Cover songs, therefore, are dangerous grounds that easily violate copyright without care, and even experienced users, such as Giuseppe, have been a target for such acts. However, not all copyright claims have proven to be genuine with some false claims made every so often. For example, SEGA has been known to claim copyright on certain songs such as "World is Mine" even though their copyright of the song is only via the Project Diva games. This does not mean that the uploader was not in the clear, as Japanese producers rarely give permission for their works to be reposted by other accounts and the vast majority find it upsetting.
Some YouTube reprinters also claim their re-submission, usually done without permission, help promote the VOCALOID artists despite upsetting them in the process. Regardless of circumstances, the main issue has always been a result of the fact that VOCALOID itself is a commercial product and open for anyone to use as they please and despite there being licensing agreements in place there is little studios can do to prevent this from occurring.
The MikuHatsuneVEVO channel on YouTube was an example of copyright infringement and was one of its most notable cases. The channel managed to gain notability and was verified as a legit channel, and was established in 2015. This allowed it gather views and act as an official channel for VOCALOID uploads, even when it's uploads had examples of misleading thumbnails, titles, characters and/or vocals in those videos. As a consequence, it allowed a number of viewers to believe that this was the official Miku channel. However, it had nothing to do with any related parties to VOCALOID or Hatsune Miku, such as Crypton Future Media or YAMAHA, and had no permissions to upload songs from producers.
Users who knew the channel was not official have tried to report the channel, even Crypton Future Media tried to report the channel themselves, but YouTube refused to remove it. This was a result of YouTube's notable issues with its copyright system which often allow abuse. This prevented the official license holders and developers of Hatsune Miku from taking down illegitimate channels and videos. The consequences of this situation was that the channel was allowed to remain and could even claim ad revenue while it was functioning, presuming that the owner allowed this. Yet, none of the ad revenue would return to the accounts of the actual producers and developers who had claims over the songs shown in the channel. Essentially, the channel was in a position in which it could steal money from the true owners of Hatsune Miku and the song producers if it desired, though it is unknown if it did. Its existence also prevented the verification of the actual official channel of Hatsune Miku 'HatsuneMiku' from being verified, even when Crypton had a link to the 'HatsuneMiku' channel on most of their websites that feature Miku.
The videos it processed did not seem to be problematic and its upload of "Ievan Polkka" gained more views then any other upload of the song, including official ones. However, while many of those watching it were unaware of the issue with the channel, eventually it uploaded a video which left no doubts on it not being the real official channel. The channel uploaded a video with the title 'Miku Hatsune - Sand Planet ft. Nikki Minaj', which included a reuploaded subbed video, and a recording of Nikki Minaj rapping to the song. However, the song was not official and Nikki Minaj had nothing to do with its existence. This gave the opening for further copyright claims against the channel that never existed before and finally allowed its closing, as well as becoming an obvious give away on the copyright infringement of the channel.
The channel was eventually removed in June 2018, finally allowing the official channel, 'HatsuneMiku,' to be verified.
Note: "VEVO", as seen in the title of the channel, is also the name of a legit company that uploads videos that existed between 2009 and 2018. Videos related to the services and company of VEVO carry 'VEVO' in their titles. The status and usage of 'VEVO' in the 'MikuHatsuneVEVO' name and if it had any impact on the channel, for or against its continued existence, is currently unknown.
Yunomi-P was subjected to hate after being forced to admit plagiarism when VOCALOID fans began to notice works by the artist were often from other sources. The stress and drama surrounding the event caused the artist to retire from VOCALOID illustrations. Songs where Yunomi had done the illustrations were targeted by trolls and anti-Yunomi messages. KARENT also was forced to remove some songs from their listings such as Magnet while the issue was resolved.
In January 2011, Japanese boyband KAT-TUN were forced to admit plagiarism against their song "Never×Over~「-」Is Your Part~", after the producer of the song admitted it was influenced by the VOCALOID song "DYE" produced by AVTechNO, after fans expressed their outrage over the similarities of the two songs. AVTechNO went down on record as stating that the band was not at fault and it was the producer of the song who committed the plagiarism.
Often, the drama is uncalled for and unnecessary. Yunomi's plagiarism, for example, was not a direct violation of copyright material as the images were used mostly as source material or were already from stock images, the use of which is common in the art world already. KAT-TUN's indirect violation resulted in both the songs "DYE" and "Never×Over~「-」Is Your Part~" receiving a particularly large amount of attention, with "Dye" itself receiving a previously unseen amount of views on Nico Nico Douga and Youtube.
The song known to VOCALOIDs fans as "Secret" is an example. Originally it was stolen from the account of Ryuuuu by aRth (who stole many other songs from Ryuuuu and other Producers). However, aRth's act of stealing the song results in Ryuuuu's otherwise previously unknown song receiving much fame and attention on a song that otherwise may not have had the attention it had.