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How Indie dev Kobra Studios went crazy with copyright strikes

It didn't take long for people to notice that this logo looked a bit familiar
It didn't take long for people to notice that this logo looked a bit familiar
Photo courtesy of Kobra Studios, used with permission

An independent developer by the name of Kobra Studios got themselves in a bit of trouble earlier this week when they began issuing copyright claims to YouTubers who had given their title Island Light a negative review. This began on Sunday when it became known that the Escapist's Jim Sterling had a strike awarded to his channel because of criticisms regarding the game's trailer. It wasn't long before another YouTuber, who goes by The Fijut, tweeted Sterling to reveal that he had also been given a similar copyright claim simply for uploading footage of the game's Steam comments.

Sterling detailed the incident in an episode of Jimquisition that was released yesterday, stating that he had seen this happen before. There was also the matter of Island Light's logo, which had been blatantly ripped from a Deviantart user's page. This is extraordinarily ironic, given Kobra's preference for copyright claims. Things continued to go downhill when another YouTube user named attackslug was given a strike for simply talking about these incidents in an open letter to Kobra Studios. All of these actions combined eventually led to the game being removed from Steam's Greenlight program, though we aren't sure whether it was Kobra Studios or Valve who deleted it.

For those who may not be up on their YouTube lingo, we'd like to mention that a copyright strike is far worse for a channel than a content ID match, which allows a developer to make ad revenue off of a user's video that features their content. Instead, a formal strike has the video immediately removed and puts the channel in a bad standing. Subsequent strikes will lead to the channel's deletion, and as Jim Sterling mentions in his statement, defending the video's content isn't a simple or straightforward process.

We'll have more information regarding this bizarre series of events as it continues. For those who are curious about the former Steam page's comment section, images of it can be found on Imgur.