Hands up if you've watched ANY Hitler parody video on YouTube in the last two/three years. Hardly a major event goes by without Hitler ranting on it, from new gadgets to even lousy soccer stars, Hitler has been the number one complainant on the Internet. From feared dictator to Internet meme, the video has given the film plenty of free publicity.
Now in case you're not sure, the clip is taken from the movie Downfall, and is owned by Constantin Film AG. In what seems to be an extremely silly move on their part, Constantin Film has decided to use a feature of YouTube which detects copyrighted material to remove the Hitler parodies.
Hello? Is anyone home in your marketing department? Look at the amount of free publicity from the clips, to the DVD sales of a film no one would have heard of. Heck, even the director of the film said he enjoyed watching the clips, and has tried to watch as many as he could.
Now to be fair, the movie is a powerful reminder of what happened in World War II and the Holocaust, and some people (including the head of film at Constantin FIlms) felt that the parodies were distasteful.
That may be, but while I find the videos funny, I can watch the scene, but I can't forget that this is Hitler. Sure he's now a comic figure, but that doesn't mean I will not forget my history lessons. I can draw the line between parody and history, and I'm sure most folks can too.
I doubt the amount of bad publicity so far will convince Constantin Film to allow the parodies back, but I'm sure folks will be able to find ways around - altering the pitch of the video slightly, or adding a 1px green line down the video will defeat the copyright detector.
Now that my rant is over, I think it's aptly fitting to end this with an Angry Hitler rant of the whole affair. Enjoy (if it stays up).
Aloysius Low / Former Tech Writer
Tech writer, gadget nerd, cat owner and social media junkie, Aloysius loves exploring the wacky side of tech, while tackling his notebook reviews.