Twitter accounts belonging to Deadspin (@Deadspin) and SB Nation (@SBNationGIF) were suspended earlier this evening after reusing NFL footage for GIFs and Vines. Both publications were served with numerous takedown notices — issued through the Digital Millennium Copyright Act — by the league, causing Twitter to enforce suspensions.
Here is the league’s statement regarding what went down tonight:
“The NFL sent routine notices as part of its copyright enforcement program requesting that Twitter disable links to more than a dozen pirated NFL game videos and highlights that violate the NFL’s copyrights. We did not request that any Twitter account be suspended.”
As we all know, the NFL is very sensitive when it comes to using any of its content. The league carefully picks and chooses its partners to maximize value rather than simply giving everyone access for exposure. So it’s not very surprising that the NFL decided to go after two of the largest Twitter accounts that post GIFs, Vines, and other items that are unauthorized. But the league also has ties with the NFL in multiple ways. The two parties inked a deal in August that provides video content to Twitter, and Twitter CFO Anthony Noto held the same position with the NFL for two years. Law, deals, and relationships are the controlling factors here.
So far, only the Twitter account belong to Deadspin has been reinstated.