Bart Baker’s parody video of Lorde’s “Royals” is back up as of noon PST. The video was taken down by YouTube on Wednesday afternoon after Lorde’s music publisher, Songs Music Publishing, flagged the video for what they allege was an illegal use of “Royals'” musical composition without license. Neither Songs Music Publishing or YouTube have publicly given a reason for the reinstatement of the video — and as of this writing, Baker’s camp themselves have yet to receive any official explanation for the video’s change in status.
Baker, whose channel reached the 2-million subscriber mark on Friday, didn’t take his newest video’s shutdown lying down, rallying supporters and fellow YouTubers on social media with “#SaveBartsLordeParody” and releasing a video on Saturday morning arguing his case. When Fullscreen CEO George Strompolos asked Songs Music CEO Matt Pincus about the takedown on Twitter yesterday, Pincus tweeted back, saying, “it’s not this kid’s fault, he’s creative. But you all distributing this kind of content have to pay for music. Simple as that,” and then turned the finger on Fullscreen and the music-centric MCN’s own legal issues with the National Music Publishers Association.
Earlier today, Baker was still battling for his cause, posting in the comments section of his “Royals Parody DELETED by Lorde’s Publishers – Help Me Get it Back”:
After unexpectedly finding out that his video had been suddenly restored a little over an hour later, Bart celebrated in its comment section:
Although Baker’s video is now back, total views on the video are relatively low in comparison to other videos he’s had up for two weeks’ time in the recent past because of its forced absence on YouTube, an interim during which other parodies and videos covering Lorde’s song have of course been uploaded. As well, Baker’s video will now restart with a disadvantage on YouTube’s video placement algorithm because of its recent lack of viewer movement during its temporary ban.
NMR has reached out to Songs Music for comment and will update as developments occur.