It’s not just YouTubers that are running afoul of YouTube’s strict content ID system these days. Presidential hopeful Rand Paul, who announced his candidacy just a few short days ago, just had his first campaign video struck down for copyright violations. Sure, it happens to the best of us, but overall it’s not a great way to start a campaign for the highest office in the land.
The apparent culprit is a song used in the video. “Shuttin’ Down Detroit” by country singer John Rich was identified by YouTube’s content ID system as the property of Warner Music Group, the massive label that owns the rights to much of Rich’s catalog. The video was immediately flagged, leaving Rand Paul’s fledgling campaign without what we can only imagine was a kicky viral video that would have driven Kentucky voters to the polls.
There are a few possible causes for the takedown. YouTube’s content ID system isn’t exactly flaw free, and there have been several recent incidents in which videos were flagged in error. A more likely explanation is that Paul’s recently launched campaign is still building up its social media team and someone either didn’t know they needed, or just plain forgot to secure the rights to Rich’s song before using it in a video. It’s a common mistake for new YouTubers and I’m sure Paul will get the hang of it soon. In the meantime perhaps Senator Paul should consult the YouTube audiolibrary for some nice royalty-free tracks. I understand there’s a pretty bomb cover of “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” in there.
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