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Thursday 09 October 2008


Dan News gets deleted

Posted in: True Stories
By Matt Akersten - 23rd April 2008

dan.jpg
Deleted: Dan Gardiner
Popular gay blogger Daniel Gardiner had uploaded 299 hilarious video clips onto the net - but then YouTube pulled the plug. What happened and why?

In a world where an ever-increasing array of media platforms churn out more and more stuff to compete for our attention, it's a relief to see a gay New Zealander step up and say "don't worry, I'll monitor everything, and if any funny stuff happens, I'll pop it up on YouTube so we can all have a giggle."

Good plan, Dan. And it worked so well, for so long. Aucklander Daniel Gardiner, 25, had hundreds of subscribers to his Dan News YouTube.com channel, many of them arriving at his video clips through his Dan News blog website and even GayNZ.com's Forum. Telly news bloopers, weird stories, fake bulletins, vintage Kiwi TV clips, that Aussie party-boy brat with the yellow sunglasses… it was all there.

Until suddenly, it wasn't. Late one night last week, Dan News on YouTube had completely disappeared.

"They said that they had had a complaint from a London film company claiming that I had infringed copyright on multiple occasions and had decided to terminate my account," Dan explains.

Shocked, he emailed YouTube's staff in polite protest. "I was told that they would not be reviewing the situation, and they also refused to send me a list of my subscribers so I could contact them and inform them that the channel had been taken down."

Some of Dan's compilation videos had taken several hours or even days to edit together, and he'd spent the last two years building up the channel, so he was pretty upset that it'd all disappeared - especially since he'd hadn't kept back-up copies of most of the clips.

"They were all videos that I hoped would make people laugh and brighten up their day," he says. "Every now and then I would get an email from someone who had watched one of the videos just saying how much it made them laugh. That makes it all worth it."

The mediaphile's most popular videos were always the news bloopers. "One blooper compilation was getting close to a million views. I'd say the news blooper ones were my favourite too. I had one where a newsreader announced that someone had just died, when she was in fact supposed to say that he had won a Nobel Prize. That one had me laughing no matter how many times I watched it. Also, I loved making political parody videos. The very first video I made was the Brian Tamaki one (which Dan has managed to re-upload, and is shown below)."

Dan realises much of his content comes from broadcasters who need to protect their copy-written property, but reflects: "I personally don't see the harm in uploading one minute of content if it makes someone laugh, and from a commercial point of view, any publicity is good publicity, right?"

What if YouTube had just warned him to remove some clips? Would he have complied? "Totally," he responds. "The videos were about having fun and making people laugh. If I upload a video that's going to get people angry, then there is no point doing it."

This week, the shock has worn off, and it's business as usual for Dan, who has started a brand new YouTube account and hopes his many fans there will find him again. In the meantime, he's still got his Dan News blog page (linked below), and hopes that if you spot a hilarious blooper on TV, you'll tell him about it, so he can share another little chuckle-worthy moment with the world.


Matt Akersten - 23rd April 2008