28 December 2022

Not Today, Devil

by Phil Johnson

any readers will remember a blogpost I wrote in August of 2011 analyzing Mark Driscoll's claim that he had a bizarre spiritual gift: an uncanny psychic ability enabling him to function as a kind of supernatural peeping Tom. He claimed to be able to watch vivid, full-color replays of his counselees' sexual sins on some sort of cosmic big screen. It was a tasteless claim—

No, it was worse. It was a rank blasphemy to claim such a freakishly prurient peculiarity had been given to him by the Holy Spirit.

A few weeks ago he filed a copyright claim to have YouTube remove that video. It was an ironic stance for him to take, given his own reputation as an unbridled plagiarist.

Anyway, I never received any notice of the takedown, and since I rarely look at my own YouTube channel, I didn't notice until YouTube's referees had already judged Driscoll's claim as legitimate. I nevertheless wrote three appeals pointing out that my use of the video clearly falls well within the 1976 Copyright Law's definition of "Fair Use," because I posted it in order to make critical commentary for a purpose that was both newsworthy and (in the proper sense) educational.

YouTube's judges held their ground, however—apparently because my actual criticisms of Driscoll's remarks were posted in the accompanying blogpost, and not in the video itself.

So I have corrected that problem by incorporating the gist of my critical remarks into the video and reposting it, together with a quotation from the relevant legal statute demonstrating why the Fair Use doctrine protects my posting of these excerpts.

If you'd like to see the revised video (unaltered except for the addition of my commentary), you can observe it where it is now imbedded in that 2011 blogpost, or at my Youtube channel. I won't imbed it here, because frankly it gives me nausea every time I see it. But I wanted to keep the matter well documented, because I hear that Driscoll has gained a sizeable new following of naive young people, and frankly, I think he is more dangerous and more unorthodox than he was at the peak of his original popularity.


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