May 21, 2021: Pale Blue Dot Series Removed from Youtube

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May 21, 2021 UPDATE:

Well, after 14 years on the internet in one form or another , it seems that none other than Ann Druyan herself has seen fit to request the removal of the PBD series from Youtube. And all without a comment, a warning, or even a boilerplate a reply to my request to engage with her (or her proxy, someone I take to be her web designer).

I am undecided at this stage how to respond. Besides the action itself seeming quite petty (given Carl Sagan’s reputation as an advocate of free thought and free minds), my respectful request to engage in a conversation with those who initiated the takedown has gone unanswered to date. Perhaps it will take more time, which is fine. Or perhaps the web designer lacks the authorization to engage and was a mere button pusher. Who can say, at this stage?

Truthfully, I’d have happily removed the videos myself, or made changes to them, if only a respectful request had been communicated to me by Ms. Druyan or other proper people. But that did not happen, and instead we find ourselves on the cusp of a seemingly adversarial relationship conjured out of nothing after nearly 15 years of the first video’s history…and for what?

What good was achieved by this action? How does any of this help spread Carl Sagan’s message of humility and tolerance, or strengthen the Carl Sagan / Cosmos Studios brand?

A final note to consider: it seems the PBD series was specifically targeted, rather than being one of many Sagan-related videos binned in a mass purge. Why Druyan would ding my stuff and yet leave online the entire unabridged audio book makes no sense at all to me.

See below…the entire, unabridged audiobook remains online as of May 31 2021… despite the book being for sale on Amazon.

And “The Sagan Series”, a somewhat more low-effort and pedestrian enterprise, but one squarely based on the same content as the PBD series, also remains curiously online..

For the time being, my two videos will remain unavailable until I am able to get to the bottom of this. I may dispute this action using a DCMA Counter-Notification in the hopes of obtaining contact information for the legal representation of Ms Druyan, and work that angle. Or perhaps I’ll just let sleeping dogs lie… I’m of two minds on the whole thing.

Until then, I want to ffer a sincere thank you for years of kind messages of support and encouragement from the video’s audience. If this takedown action bothers you, please consider reaching out at carlsagan.com and leaving a respectful comment asking them to reconsider this takedown action. It’s not too late to fix things…

7 thoughts on “May 21, 2021: Pale Blue Dot Series Removed from Youtube

  1. This was just, in a word, astonishing. I literally felt that I was watching a Sagan documentary I had been previously unaware of, only realizing (in spite of the “unauthorized view”) afterwards that this was a private labor of love, put together with great skill and craft. What a gift for these dispiriting times. I cannot thank you enough.

    1. Thanks very much for saying so, Michael — you’re one of the elite few who have made the jump from Youtube to here. It mean a lot that you’ve made the trek, and thought enough to say so. I do hope Chapter III is, which is underway at the moment, is as well received as the first two chapters were. This is a long-term project.

      Anyway, many thanks for your visit. I do plan to write more about this, so watch this space.

      Take care, je

  2. Astounding. It is as if Carl Sagan did not really die but just took a sabbatical to create a final
    presentation of his life’s work. I discovered it Easter weekend, 2020. He is risen indeed.

  3. Great video,thanks a lot for your hard work. May I translate your videos into Chinese and upload them to Chinese
    websites?Looking forward to your reply.

    1. Hi Jason,

      I’d be pleased if you could do so, all I ask is that you would provide links to the sites as you upload them. Feel free to leave those links as replies, here. Thanks!

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