Youtube will mask user IDS

July 16, 2008 7:32:08 AM PDT
It's a compromise that may help quiet critics of YouTube. The video sharing site says it will mask the identities of individual users when it gives up records in connection with a billion-dollar copyright-infringement lawsuit. YouTube says it will substitute user IDs, Internet addresses and other means of identifying customers before turning over the user information to Viacom.

Viacom and other copyright holders are suing the site, claiming it helps users violate copyrights on shows ranging from Comedy Central's "The Daily Show With Jon Stewart" to "SpongeBob Square Pants," which airs on Nickelodeon.

Lawyers for Viacom and the other plaintiffs signed an agreement with YouTube Monday, saying they'd accept steps to help YouTube preserve the anonymity of the records.