This week saw an interesting turn of events for the much-loved Internet Historian. Sitting at nearly 4 million Youtube subscribers, it’s fair to say that he’s a popular figure. However, things aren’t all gravy for him, as one of his biggest videos, “Man In Cave” was removed due to plagiarism, despite many assuming that it was previously due to a DMCA copyright claim.
As seen in the screenshot above, it was removed by a company named Pro Sportority Israel and was apparently taken down due to blatantly and unlawfully plagiarizing verbatim text from a Mental Floss article titled “The 1925 Cave Rescue that Captivated the Nation,” which was published in 2018. The article bears similarities to the video in terms of content placement, pacing, presentation, and voiceover narration. Of course, this is somewhat debatable, and down to personal interpretation.
On social media, one fan wrote, “I was so mad that the original video got claimed and so happy it got re-uploaded. I just rewatched it and decided to look up why it got claimed in the first place. I checked this article from 2018 (didn’t read it all but skimmed through) and, as much as I hate to see it, the video does seem like a copy of this article. The narrative is almost identical and the fact that Internet Historian changed from his original upload reinforces the idea of plagiarism. I understand why they would claim it but I really hope they don’t take the video down anymore, it’s one of my favorite videos out there.”
Since then, the video was re-uploaded, this time crediting Mental Floss but has since been taken down yet again. Overall, this sets an interesting precedent for how Youtube videos have to be careful when using content from websites and may change the landscape of how future videos are created.