It’s been interesting to watch YouTube grow over the years. What started out as a relatively reckless video sharing site has now become a bonafide cultural epicenter for online media. These days, millions of people flock to the site to share and document just about anything – cover songs, compilations, skits, educational videos, etc. With the onslaught of content popping up all over the world, both original and derivative, it’s been a nightmare for the copyright world to keep up with; most notably in the music industry. More users are seeing their videos removed and channels deleted due to stricter laws tightening up on music copyright infringement.
Why does a YouTube channel get deleted? Typically, the three reasons for channel deletion are repeated violations of the YouTube Community Guidelines or Terms of Service, a single case of severe abuse (such as predatory behavior or spam) and/or repeated claims of copyright infringement. The latter is a subject many users encounter that highlights a much larger issue within the music industry. Most YouTube users have more than likely committed some form of copyright infringement without even knowing it. Between the confusion of music copyright law and misunderstanding of fair use as it applies to YouTube, it’s not surprising that good intentioned YouTubers can sometimes find themselves in hot water
Uploading a cover song or having an unoriginal song play in the background of a video without permission are both very common infringements. Every aspiring singer who has uploaded a cover of Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” without permission from her or XL Recordings did so illegally. Through Content ID, YouTube has developed an increasingly effective method for content owners to keep up with when, where, and how their material is being used.
Content ID matches uploaded audio/video with a database of audio files submitted by the copyright owners themselves. If so and so uploads a cover of their favorite song, then the Content ID software will scan it and figure out to whom the original content belongs. If the song is matched to a copyrighted work, then the user will get a notice that may or may not result in the video being blocked. If a video is blocked or removed, then that counts as a strike against your YouTube account. Just like in baseball, three copyright strikes and you’re out.
Copyright and content owners work tirelessly to protect their work and the work of their artists. Because copyright infringement is so prevalent today, there’s an increasing demand for a legal and efficient way around this issue. Creators can spend hours and hours making something inspired only to have it stripped away due to misuse of copyrighted material. There’s a way for these specific content creators to have their cake and eat it too. Muserk for instance lets creators discover pre-licensed material and legally use and share that material. By letting creators merge that music with their videos, Muserk effectively frees the creative process by relieving the stresses of copyrighting and licensing.
When a YouTube channel gets deleted, all of the content associated with that channel is deleted as well. It could be devastating for someone who’s simply wanting to share their audio/video creation with others. Luckily, Muserk is a liaison that protects both parties by giving credit to the content owner and giving the creators the protected freedom to use that content.