- (Photo: The Christian Post / Francis Helguero, File)
A former Navy chaplain turned conservative social commentator is working to suspend the YouTube Account of a Progressive organization's watchdog group.
Gordon "Dr. Chaps" Klingenschmitt, speaker with The Pray in Jesus' Name Project, has filed multiple copyright infringement complaints against Right Wing Watch.
His efforts have resulted in YouTube taking down RWW's account earlier this month. At present, RWW is appealing the video website's decision.
In an interview with The Christian Post, Klingenschmitt explained that he began filing complaints against RWW "because I got tired of their theft, copyright infringement, and piracy of my original video content."
"They copy my videos and republish them under their own brand and logo, pretending as if they were the original creators, raising money for their cause, and failing to give credit," said Klingenschmitt.
"Then they allow their followers to post comments, including death threats against me, and refuse to delete those death threats despite their admin power and history of moderating or deleting other comments in my favor, which they don't like."
Klingenschmitt also told CP that if RWW halts their alleged piracy of his content and remove the threats from their comments section, "then I may be willing to drop the case and forgive them."
Right Wing Watch is a project of the People For the American Way, a progressive organization founded in 1981 largely in response to the rise of the Religious Right.
According to its website, RWW showcases video footage of various conservative pundits and social commentators, often saying things inflammatory or controversial.
Other monitoring efforts on the part of RWW include information from various written sources by conservative activists and politicians, such as action alerts and online perspective pieces.
"Our researchers monitor dozens of broadcasts, emails and websites, and use their expertise on right-wing movements to analyze and distill that information for the general public," reads their website.
"We hope that by shedding light on the activities of right-wing organizations, we can expose the risks that their extreme and intolerant agendas present to our country. We do not endorse the views of groups that we report on."
RWW created a YouTube account to post the excerpts they compiled, with the occasional past video being taken down due to complaints.
Layne Amerikaner, spokesperson for People For the American Way, referred to the complaints by Klingenschmitt as "frivolous."
"Gordon Klingenschmitt filed a series of frivolous copyright complaints against our video clips, which are clearly protected by Fair Use," said Amerikaner to The Christian Post.
"We had already filed counter-claims to two earlier copyright claims from Mr. Klingenschmitt at the time the account was terminated from the filing of Mr. Klingenschmitt's third frivolous claim. We expect those claims to be decided in our favor, at which time our account will be reinstated."
Amerikaner also told CP that this latest incident was not the first time conservatives criticized on the RWW website and YouTube account have made efforts to remove content.
"Each of these videos has ultimately been restored after going through YouTube's standard review process," said Amerikaner.
"It's clear that Mr. Klingenschmitt would like to hide his record of bigoted and dangerous comments. Unfortunately for him, we'll continue to write about his ongoing campaign of dishonest smears aimed at stoking hatred of LGBT people."
"Right Wing Watch has defamed good Christians for years, by stealing or misquoting or taking out of context small sound-bites and spinning them to mock God and ministers or leaders who worship God," said Klingenschmitt to CP.
"It reminds me of Jesus' words, that if they hate you, just remember they hated Jesus first."