REDWOOD CITY -- A Peninsula card room is suing several YouTube users who posted videos of violent confrontations between gamblers and security staff on the video-sharing website.
Lucky Chances Casino in Colma is seeking a court order to force the unidentified posters to take down the videos, which "create the false impression that Lucky Chances card room is a disorderly and unsafe place" and that the establishment's staff is "violent and aggressive and/or incapable of maintaining order," according to the complaint filed in San Mateo County Superior Court. YouTube is not named in the suit.
The first video was posted last December under the title "Casino Fight 333" and shows a busy gambling floor at the card room during the roughly 90 second clip. A brief scuffle, far from the surveillance camera's lens, breaks out between patrons and is quickly quashed by security guards. It appears that someone filmed the footage, posted by a user named "Terry Mcgrath333," as it was being played on a video monitor. More than 3,700 people had clicked on the clip, which requires viewers be 18 or older to view it, as of Tuesday night.
Another video shows a man seated at a card table. He is battling with a security guard wearing a black suit, surrounded by four other guards in blue shirts. The confrontation, posted by "rick5x5" in September under the title "Casino Fight 555," quickly escalates and shows a guard yanking the man to the floor and trying to restrain him. The 6½-minute video cuts to the man in a back room, where he is shouting at the guard dressed in black. The gambler is then escorted out of the building by what appear to be uniformed police and put into a waiting black Cadillac. As of Tuesday evening, about 370 people had watched the video, which also appeared to have been recorded as it played on a TV screen.
A third video of surveillance is titled "Me in Action," but has already been taken down from the YouTube site.
The suit does not name the video posters, but says they "did not have authorization to enter Lucky Chances premises" and record the surveillance footage. Taking the footage without permission and posting it has caused damage to the card room's reputation and has disrupted an "ability to cultivate new business with potential customers," according to the suit.
When reached by phone Tuesday, Lucky Chances attorney Olga Savage declined to comment on the case.
YouTube declined to discuss the videos specifically, but said in a written statement that it generally takes down videos if they violate community or privacy guidelines. YouTube also removes content in response to copyright complaints reported by the owner of a copyrighted video. The company has systems in place whereby videos are flagged, reviewed and removed if they violate the website's policies, the statement said.
Contact Joshua Melvin at 650-348-4335.