Thanks for answering -
I knew it was illegal to render the content (audio or visual, whatever the case for the content might be) to be 'aired' (sounds like the right word) in public without prior consent to the holder of the rights.
What I'm miffed about is why then, is YouTube allowed to 'air' the content (which we have deemed illegal) without consent of the rights holders, whether it be one view or millions, with no legal action taken against A) Google, B) the content uploader, C) the viewers who watched/listened to the content?
Aside from some of the obvious reasons I can think of, like loads of money spent on frivolous lawyers to open or defend the cases, the taxes paid to the public officials and workers in publicly paid settings; seeing, overhearing and recording the cases (from the police all the way to the judge and prisons, and everyone in between like clerks), the sheer amount of people who could/might be indicted, and so on - what's the core of the issue as to why it hasn't or isn't being done (beyond what I've already surmised)?
It is the copyright holder's responsibility to write up the cease and desist orders, and file lawsuits if those orders aren't followed, or if significant damages have already been done. Youtube won't do it unless requested.