Thank you @Robert Nicholson - that was a very informative response.
I'm wondering if you have any notion of how the DMCA applies, or does not apply, to non-US based entities. Many of the contributors to Narrative will be from other jurisdictions. The most recent encounters I have had with abuse of the takedown process involved Japanese citizens on Youtube. People making spurious complaints against conservationist content critical of the whale and dolphin hunting in Japan.
It was great that you had recourse against that attorney because he was US based (even though I'm sure you hated every minute of time you had to waste getting your content reinstated and making sure he faced consequences)... but would there even be that option for people not from the US?
Likewise, would the requirement for the platform to suspend the content even be applicable to complainants from other jurisdictions? That might be the solution - to only suspend content if the jurisdiction of the complainant can cause trouble for the platform, and in all other cases, allow the complaint process to be completed before taking action?
In cases where platform liability is not immediately present, it would be more fair, perhaps, to leave the content live but place an indication somewhere that there is a complaint against the content, transparently showing the parties to the complaint. Transparency is one of our guiding principles, and it would seem to have positive applications here.
There might also be some way to deter abuse by revealing the identity of the complainant party publicly - if that is not too fraught with its own problems. As in not the account, but the actual individual filing the complaint? We would not want to reveal the link between that real life individual and their Narrative account, but we could internally track that data. Personally, I think it is only fair for the outcome of a complaint to be public knowledge, and for people to be able to know the identity of people who have abused the process. Like this, even in countries where there is no legal recourse against abusive takedowns, the abuser would still at least be outed publicly. And of course their account would suffer reputation penalties... despite still remaining anonymous outwardly.
This brings the consideration of identity tracking to bear, again.
I fully support that Narrative should not retain personal ID data on its servers, but perhaps a DMCA complaint should be an exception to that rule. After all, this is someone who has initiated a legal procedure - surely privacy laws allow companies to keep data on people who take such a step? Like this, abusers would not be able to shed their bad reputations, and Narrative could reapply the history from a former account to the new one if the abuser tries to "shapeshift".
If identifying oneself as part of the DMCA process is a requirement, Narrative may be entitled to track that data.
Now deviating a little bit from what is possible, and imagining what might be preferable if the law were different: I would really favor the law only allowing the takedown once the process has been completed unless there is a clear cut case that irretrievable damages are being incurred. In the majority of non-commercial content: blogs, videos that either are entirely original or would probably fall under fair use, etc... the monetization could simply be frozen for that content during the dispute, and if the complainant prevails, the funds could be turned over to them?
Being presumed guilty is commonly not acceptable in Western systems of law.
I would love to find a solution to this, though I accept that it might be difficult given that other large platforms don't seem to have found an ideal one yet.
My hope is that they might not have tried hard enough to find a more equitable solution because their focus may have been too blinded to anything else than protecting themselves from liability. In practice, there may be a middle road that still protects the platform, but better preserves a presumption of innocence for the poster of the content?