Ahhh, sneaky, sneaky YouTube.
So a longstanding question has been answered in regards to why this whole YouTube gamer copyright snafu went down like it did. it’s even obvious when you think about it, but for some reason I’d never realized it … until now. The question is: “Why has YouTube been leaving up flagged copyright content instead of pulling the videos as they used to do?” And, of course, the answer is money.
YouTube, rather than yanking the videos, diverts the funds usually given to the uploader instead to the third party complainer — of course YouTube still keeps its own fee no matter who the residual payout goes to. So it makes perfect sense for YouTube to keep their Content ID system in place and keep trucking on like nothing is wrong. In fact, days after this was all a story, YouTube has finally been sufficiently bothered enough to respond to the kerfuffle. Dispensing a letter to account holders, YouTube states:
Hi from YouTube,
You might have heard about, or been impacted by an increase in copyright claims made on videos over the past week. We’re getting in touch to explain what’s happening and how you can get back to creating and monetizing great videos.
Content ID is YouTube’s system for scanning videos for copyrighted content and giving content owners choices on what they want us to do with them. Last week, we expanded the system to scan more channels, including those affiliated with a multi-channel network (“MCN”). As a result, some channels, including many gaming channels, saw claims appear against their videos from audio or video copyright holders.
Understanding Content ID claims
Keep in mind one video may contain multiple copyrighted works, any of which could potentially result in a claim. For example a record label may own music playing in the video (even in the background), a music distributor may own a game’s soundtrack, or a game publisher may own in-game cinematic content.
Also, online rights are often resold to companies like music labels and aggregators. While you might not recognize the owner, this doesn’t necessarily mean their claims are invalid.
Deciding what to do
When a claim is made, you’ll see what’s been claimed, who’s claimed it, what type of claim it is (audio or video), and you can play back the part of your video that it matched. We want to make it as easy as possible for you to act on Content ID claims, and you can find out all your next steps, dispute options, and other troubleshooting resources here.
It’s also important to know that most claims won’t impact your account standing.
Tips for new videos
If you’re creating videos with content from other people, remember that rights ownership can be complicated and different owners have different policies. Be aware of music. Many games allow you to turn off background music, while leaving sound effects enabled. And if you’re looking for music you can freely use (and monetize!), check out our Audio Library.
Whether gaming, music or comedy is your passion, know that we love what you do. We’ve worked hard to design Content ID and other tools to give everyone — from individual creators to media companies — the opportunity to make great videos and earn money. As YouTube grows, we want to make sure we’re providing the right product features to ensure that everyone continues to thrive.
The YouTube team
Not exactly an apology or anything, but it’s good to know that YouTube is at least cognizant that they played a hand in screwing with a lot of people’s interests right before the holidays. Perhaps they were visited by three ghosts in the night but the message only kinda stuck? Well, unless someone wants to go all Norma Rae and organize a union protest or something, this is probably the best we’ll get. In the end, it might be easier to just mute the audio from the games and supply your own badass kazoo noises. Or use that Audio Library that YouTube mentions. Yeah, maybe forget the kazoo thing …
Here’s other articles on the copyright matter: