There is nothing more frustrating than uploading your latest video for your subscribers just to find that your monetisation has been disabled due to third party content detected in your video. This renders your video revenueless for the first few hours of its existence, at least until the third party releases it and your video monetization is re-enabled.
As a serious YouTuber you will be accustomed to licensing music for use in your videos. However, even though you have a commercial license to use music you may still get a third party claim.
This is very frustrating for you as a YouTuber and for us as a music library.
The Pointless Dispute Process
If you have a genuine license, YouTube enables you to file a dispute. Once a claim is removed you can then monetize your video. Yay! But rather pointless after you have already lost the bulk of your monetization when your subscribers first watched it 🙁
Most music libraries who offer you a license for royalty free music, stock music etc. (including us until recently) will tell you to use the appeal process if you have a problem. However, by this time you have already had the problem and it will not bring back your lost revenue.
Music libraries tend to fall into 3 main camps:
- Those who say music is clear of content ID and safe for YouTube
- Those who say they’ll sort it if it becomes a problem
- Those who tell you it is going to happen because that’s how they earn their income
I no longer believe that music libraries can say “our music is free of content ID” followed by “…but we will help you if you have a problem”. I say this because if you could guarantee that music is free of content ID you would not need to help clients with content ID problems.
Until recently we too thought and claimed that our music was free from content ID. We don’t think this is possible anymore because frequently over the last few years we have had to help clients with content ID issues. Saying music is clear of content ID is one thing but guaranteeing it, and guaranteeing it won’t cause a problem is impossible. We have never accepted content ID’d music in our library but we have still had to deal with hundreds of emails to resolve problems it has caused. So, no matter how careful you are, Content ID happens.
Here are the main problems we have experienced:
- Music we thought was free of content ID has inadvertently become registered with content ID by the composer due to misunderstanding the terms of other agreements they are in or have recently entered.
- A composer had his music stolen and put into content ID by someone else who was not authorised to do so.
- Music gets incorrectly identified by YouTube’s content detection algorithm as something else or something it isn’t.
- Music that has previously been administered with one content ID agency is now administered by a new company on behalf of the composer resulting in all previous whitelists being removed.
In all of the above cases these caused our clients a problem, either as lost monetization or adverts showing on videos with competing products or services.
Even music that is supposed to be clear of content ID may not be and can be registered anytime for any of the reasons above. This means that all uses of that music track become detected and flagged by YouTube’s content ID.
We want to help clients before there is a problem
As of now we have changed our YouTube policy (it can be seen if full here) but the short version is that we suggest a best practice method for using licensed music on YouTube. This process can be used to safely see the status of any music before publishing your video.
However, we can only help in cases where you have licensed the music from us. If you are using other libraries music, contact them in those cases.
YouTube Best Practice for using licensed music
The process is simple…
- Upload your video a few days before you want to go live but make it Unlisted
- If Content ID is present it will be detected soon after, usually within a few minutes as the process is automatic. In your Video Manager it will read ‘Includes copyrighted content’ next to the video
- If you do get a notice, contact us directly with your video URL and details about what is flagged
- We whitelist your video or in some cases your channel
- Make your video public
This can usually be done in a matter of hours.
We need to know the following details:
- The video URL
- The music identified
- The claimant. i.e.AdRev, The Orchard etc.
Prevention rather than a cure
By using our suggested best practice we can help in advance of your video going live. And most importantly we can help before it has a negative impact on your income. Please note, we only have the authority to help with music licensed from MediaMusicNow.co.uk & RoyaltyFreeMusic.uk.com, however, you should use this YouTube Best Practice Process for all music you use.
The vast majority of our music will currently show up as clear, however, following our YouTube Best Practice Process is the only way to guarantee that your video goes live without any content ID messages.
Things are always changing and technology is always improving. Content ID is manageable providing users of music understand it and libraries provide the right help. Simply following our YouTube Best Practice Process should stop it impacting your monetization as any problems can be sorted before your viewers see your video.
Ideally, we would like to keep all of our music clean of content ID but it seems to be the way many content owners are moving to protect their content from unlicensed use and piracy and we can’t go back to the days when Content ID didn’t exist.
Feel free to comment about your experience. If you are a client who has concerns, contact us directly we would be happy to help.