That's what 20th Century Fox wants to know, which is why the video site was served with a subpoena demanding that the identity of the user be disclosed. A second subpoena was served on a smaller video site called LiveDigital. And it's not just any old episode that was uploaded, but an episode that had yet to air on Fox. Also cited in the subpoena were episodes of "The Simpsons" that had already aired. The story takes on intriguing dimensions because Google just purchased YouTube (and Google has a history of fighting efforts to seek the names of folks using the service). THR picks it up:
The subpoena identifies the YouTube subscriber by the username "ECOtotal." A search under that username on the YouTube site unearthes a user by that name with a banner across the top of the subscriber's page that reads, "This user account has been suspended." Still, identifying "ECOtotal" won't necessarily explain how unaired episodes of "24" made it onto the Internet. Prior to Jan. 8, there were reports that the same episodes had popped up on illegal filesharing sites, which may have transmitted them even before they appeared on YouTube. This is not an unprecedented request for YouTube. Last May, prior to its $1.65 billion acquisition by Google, the site complied with a request made by Paramount Pictures to identify a user who shot his own unauthorized short film adapted from the screenplay of the Oliver Stone film "World Trade Center."