Wednesday, August 29, 2012

YouTube says I've been bad....

YouTube thinks I've posted music illegally, which is ironic because I have; just not the video that they think.

But a bit of history first. A few years back I shot some video at a James Blunt concert. I posted it, and it got a few hits (nothing spectacular) and his label immediately protested it and had it taken down. Back then YouTube just sent you a notice it had been removed and told you not to do it again.

Actually, it was good that they did, because the video was appalling bad - think cell phone at a concert quality -  and it's removal saves me the embarrassment of having to admit I actually attended a James Blunt concert. (In my defense, it was a free concert with a bunch of acts, and I didn't go to see him - honest.)

But I digress.

The video that they are all upset about this time has some music taken from the Apple Final Cut Pro 7 sound library. Now it's my understanding that this music comes with permission to use it, providing you weren't repackaging it in another music library. [Editors note: If you know different, please email us!]

And oddly enough, I specifically used that music - rather than some 'found sound' I had of people playing covers of other songs - because I wanted to make something that was 'kosher.'

But it appears that either I am wrong, or have been mislead, as today - two years after it was posted - I got the following notice:

Your video may have content that is owned or licensed by Music Video Distributors. As a result, the video has been blocked on YouTube.
This claim is penalizing your account status. Visit your Copyright Notice page for more details on the policy applied to your video.
- The YouTube Team

Cue righteous indignation and high dudgeon...

I have appealed the suspension (see steps below) and I also went and found the site of "Music Video Distributors" and sent them the following, carefully worded email:
 I just received a take down notice on YouTube that Music Video Distributors claims the license on some music that was used in a video.
This music came from a library of music that came with Final Cut Pro 7 that I understood to be usable without a license fee provided it was not resold as part of a music library.
Is this not correct? What is the licensing arrangement that you have, or had with Apple?
Thank you.

I will post more...if I hear more.


For those that haven't had the joy of having something questioned by YouTube, these are the current steps you take when you get the above notice.

1. Click on the link labelled "Copyright notice page" in the email. This brings you to the following screen.

2. At this Copyright Notice screen you can either acknowledge that you've been a bad boy and delete the video or replace the audio with music from YouTube's music library. OR, you can click on "I believe this copyright claim is not valid," which is what I did. Then you get this screen:

3. This screen lets you choose why you think you have been wronged - or are in the right. I particularly enjoy the choices 'I'm not selling the video or making any money from it' and 'I gave credit in the video.' It's like a multiple choice test, and surely they come back with 'Wrong Guess" if you choose those; but I didn't try them, even out of curiosity. If anyone has, please let me know what's behind those doors...

I chose "I have a license or written permission from the proper rights holder to use this material" which I think is closest to what I think the situation is. This brings you to the next screen:

4. Here you say "Yes, I'm sure of it," - just incase you were maybe guessing? This then brings you to the next screen, where fortunately you get a chance to explain yourself:

5. This is what I wrote for my explanation:
I own a copy of Final Cut Pro 7, which contains a library of licensed music. It was my understanding that this music could be used in productions (such as this one) provided you weren't reselling or creating some repackaging of the music in the library (which this clip does not do.)
Hmm..thinking about it now, I probably could have worded that better.

6. Finally, you put in your name, click continue, and you get a dialog box saying "Are you sure you want to dispute this claim" - because clearly they don't think you should be. I was really starting to think I needed a lawyer by my side reviewing everything.


GreenGenes said...

This is happening with people using the SmartSound SonicFire library as well. Here's what they have to say about it.

1200flasher said...

I've had a company claim the music in my YouTube video violated their copyright. The only problem is that my video had NO music in it.

I think some companies are just claiming copyright left and right hoping someone will pay them.

Not I.