Youtube Copyright Claims - Fed Up With Constant Copyright Claims on Most Envato Tracks

…UPDATE ELITE ALLIANCE HAS JUST DENIED OUR APPEAL ON THEIR FALSE COPYRIGHT CLAIM. THIS MEANS THE ARTIST WILL GET OUR EARNINGS HELD IN ESCROW FOR OUR CONTENT. THERE IS NO STSTEM FOR RE-APPEAL. ELITE ALLIANCE DID NOT RESPOND. 2 WEEKS DEALING/WAITING WITH THIS AND… LOSS OF EARNINGS, WHEN WE HAVE A LICENSE!

Our Youtube channel gets hammered constantly by agencies making illegitimate claims for tracks on Envato, for which we have a fully paid Envato yearly licence for.

Elite Alliance has just DENIED our Envato licence, even after we disputed it. Now we have to appeal. We just had a claim against us for the same track on a different video about two weeks ago! We have written Elite Alliance before and they don’t even bother to try to help.

It is hard enough to make a crust on Youtube without repeatedly having our Adsense money effectively stollen from us. Our very hard earned profits are diminished by being burdened with extra paperwork and time disputing false claims and then checking, calculating and chasing for money put in escrow during copyright disputes.

Yes our claim [usually] gets solved, but it takes a time and energy disputing claims. It is on ALMOST EVERY TRACK we use. It is not the quick, two clicks Envato and some of the commenters who have had false claims but just role over with a smile and accept this crazy situation without question.

After filling out the Youtube forms, it is quite a bit of work calculating and chasing Adsense for the held back ad revenue .

We have complained to Envato (multiple times) and they just say it isn’t their problem. We complained to Youtube (multiple times) and they say it is nothing to do with them either. We write to the agencies and the majority of them do nothing.

Can Others who are having illegitimate claims please comment about your experience of agencies making claims.

The only thing that I can do now is close my Envato membership and try with another provider.

I think if these music artists were hit with a penalty fee every time members got hit with a false claim, someone would fix this broken system of assuming no one has a licence.

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To avoid this you just have to buy exclusive music at universal for example, it is only for you but it is much, much more expensive and there, the author does not put his music in monetization because he does not have no need for the few cents that monetization can bring him to live. When you see the price of most of the music sold here, even if I were a buyer I would be ashamed to pay so little for the talent of an artist.

I don’t know what Elite Alliance is, but copyright claims are easily resolved by submitting the license for that track to YouTube. From my experience, resolution takes a day or two at most, and no revenue is lost. You can always avoid using tracks registered with ContentID; that information is clearly visible on every item page.

Oh, it’s not a few cents. It’s thousands of dollars per year for many and even tens of thousands of dollars per year for some. That is a LOT of music being used without paying.

Yes, it’s a minor inconvenience for content creators. But as contributors to the process, we also have the right to be compensated for our efforts.

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I am working with Elite Alliance as my publisher and day after day receive request from them to release claims on certain YouTube videos. In case if buyer didn’t broke the license rules it’s super fast and easy. But what i found - most problems with licenses happened when buyers purchased one license and used track in multiple different videos. So this not an intro or outro, this not a series of videos, which covered by Envato license with certain limitations, this is misunderstanding of license rules and actually misuse of work of author. In that case with my music (as example) i can’t release claims for such videos and ask people to purchase correct license. Guys from Elite Alliance know our licensing rules too, so they wrote in every refused request what’s the reason of refusal. So to show the full picture, you can show their replies to you with the reasons of rejection. The picture will be much clearer

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And by the way - claims generated by the YouTube Content ID system, it’s automatic, if everything ok with your licenses, all this things sorted fast. Usually buyers do not understand, that we are not selling tracks, we are selling licenses to use our music, according to certain rules, described in license FAQ. I hope this helps.

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Very interesting. I’ve seen many complaints about Elite Alliance rejecting licenses and I thought there was an issue with that service. But, if this is all because they are strictly implementing Envato’s license terms, then this is actually positive and makes that service quite interesting indeed.

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We all know these are bound to be claimed eventually, whether legitimately or illegitimately. It’s always a safer to bet to get ContentID registered music, as you know what’s in store.

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I have the same problem, which is a shame because my favorite composer Vitpiano had to leave Ukraine with his young family. Much as I want to buy as many licenses of his, as my business can manage, I can’t risk claims or someone else monetizing my clients’ work (not for profit).

If you find a work around please let me know.

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@ EightBallAudio and @ LumenMedia As I have tied to clarify and reiterated in my original post it is NOT A SIMPLE SITUATION in our experience. If you have a youtube channel and are a content creator who has actually personally been hit repeatedly with illegitimate claims, please tell of your procedure …
Because from my ongoing experience for many months what you say is not my experience.

Our experience is we get a claim after claim every week on every track (which in itself takes enough admin time dealing with to make it aggravating). And then:

a. Our ad money is held in escrow until the matter is resolved. We often have to chase for the Adsense revenue that got held back. This involves calculating the revenue to double check, sometimes writing in and always checking back… THIS TAKES A LOT OF TIME and therefore eats up a money we make on Youtube in time spent. And it is not always ‘a day or two at most’ in the time agencies take to clear, but regardless, it still involves a significant amount of our earnings being held back that we have to spend time – which we need to spending creating – to chase and check, when we paid fairly and honestly for the right to use the track.

b. Agencies sometimes deny the licence for reasons unknown and we have to appeal. Yes we DO have a licence for each project if we re-use the same track. So, yes, the appealed denied claims eventually have all been cleared. However, the process takes a significant amount of time and it is a bother and a worry, when we have PAID. Time spent and worry costs us money and makes our experience as creators unpleasant and stressful.

c. To try and remedy the problem of automatic claims/ reclaims, we eventually write to the most aggressive agencies directly. It involves TIME looking the agencies up, writing in, sometimes following up and sending proofs. And then still we often continue to get claims from the very same agencies.

d. We get repeated claims for the same tracks we cleared the week before with the same agencies. Again, this is even after we request to be white listed at certain agencies and send in proof of an active Envato membership/licence.

*TO REITERATE, IN THE CASE OF USING THE SAME TRACK MORE THAN ONCE (ON DIFFERENT PROJECTS), WE DO HAVE A SEPARATE LICENCE IN THESE CASES.

e. We also have to keep an eye on older videos randomly receiving claims and re-claims. As above. It is costing us time and aggravation.

SO TO SUM UP AGAIN (FROM THE POINT OF A CREATOR): Yes, we keep hearing from those who are musicians or linked to agencies how EASY, EASY, EASY it is to fight a copyright claim on licensed music. Our experience is it is a considerable burden on our channel… We also keep hearing the claims made against us are automatic and ‘not personal’. Automatic and not personal or not, my point is the system is broken. Guilty until proven innocent (and then still guilty if the agency/artist say it is - even when proof of innocence is shown) is not fair and hardly makes using paid music worth the bother for a mid-sized channel.

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Yep. Same. I won’t use certain artists work now. Our new policy is if we get a repeat claim on the same artist, that’s the last time I use the artist. It’s too bad, but it’s not fair to us either and I don’t have any more time to deal with the hassle and loses.

Maybe artists will complain and they will finally find a logical, painless solution like the ability to submit the proof of licences when uploading content – or at lease a direct link for an easy whitelist request with the agencies that are quick to submit and actually work.

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@tatyanahill2 There is a solution to your problem, hire a composer within your team.

Receiving a copyright claim for using copyrighted material is a normal process.

A valid license from Envato allows you to clear the claim so that you can monetize your video.

If a valid license is rejected, then something’s not working as it should.

Once a copyright claim has been cleared, the video should not be claimed again. This abnormal behavior should be reported to the author, so they know there is an issue and ask their third-party service what’s wrong.

Asking to be whitelisted is not the proper way to clear claims. Whitelist status may be revoked if other copyrighted assets are used on the channel later on. In which case, all copyrighted assets may get claimed again. It’s always safer to deal with claims individually.

Also, a copyright claim is not something you have to “fight”, it doesn’t say you’re “guilty” and you don’t have to prove your “innocence”. It’s not a lawsuit, it’s not accusing you of anything. It merely generates a copyright notice that indicates that copyrighted material is used on the video, that’s it.

Now, of course I understand the pain that comes with having videos getting re-claimed when you already provided a valid license. However that shouldn’t happen. It looks like a bug that should be addressed.

Maybe you video uploaders can complain as well. You certainly do complain to us music authors who have no say whatsoever on how YouTube set their system up. As YouTube users, you should let YouTube know you’re not happy with their service. They’re the ones who actually can do something about it.

Hi Purple Fog,
Thanks for your input. I am not complaining here because this is the beginning of my dealings with this frustrating matter. My reason for writing here is out of desperation because this is a nasty, costly situation, not just because I had one or two claims and I don’t know how to read and follow the normal procedure instructed…

Again, I HAVE COMPLAINED TO YOUTUBE until I am ‘blue in the face’.

Every Youtube associate I have ever had any contact from has repeatedly insisted this matter is absolutely nothing to do with Youtube and basically that they are ‘just the messenger’. I have spoken to at least 4 representatives at Youtube and written every e-mail address I could find. I have sent messages to their help chat and waited for them to contact their associates higher up etc. Youtube says they are ’ so sorry ’ and just sends template letters that point us to the How-To pages, which indicate (once again) how hassle-free and simple copyright claims are to resolve.

Youtube advised to contact agencies.

Apart from creating video content, we are visual and literary artists, so we am not saying music artists don’t face their own obstacles. However, if no one explains that this is happening, artists are not aware of the frustration that starts to make buying licensed music not really worth it.

**This isn’t a discussion with us whining about getting hit with claims because we tried to dodge the system and steal from artists - like many do - by not paying for use. Maybe it is annoying to music artists to get complaints. And I know you don’t get a lot when licensing your music this way. But artist agree to go on platforms like Envato and users who pay for music PAY FAIRLY for the use of the music.

So YES it really, in effect, is “fighting” and being held as “guilty” when we continually get our income held back for copyright claims when we have licences. And then (YES) we have to chase and check back for money to be released (and check that it is the right amount - because there have been significant discrepancies) on all our content on an ongoing basis.

The amount of admin time that builds up is a large amount of work and too large for a mid-sized channel.

I have complained to Envato several times to see if they can weigh in to help, since a fix would benefit both artists and users. Envato either cannot or won’t do anything.

I HAVE dealt with claims individually via the normal route as above. Again, my reason for going to agencies to get whitelisted is because the claims are a constant, repeated, hassle causing us time, money and aggravation.

This public discussion is after months of trying everything on the formal advice pages and everything I can think that seems to be of common sense to remedy a situation that (in my opinion) is broken. So that at least more creators quietly pulling their hair out will feel they are not the only one… And perhaps something will filter through to someone who makes decisions if someone speaks out.

I do not think this is personal (I mean I don’t believe anyone is ‘out to get us’). Therefore I assume many other creators who use licensed music on Youtube must in the same frustrating situation???

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The system is not ideal, but this is the only system that exist now. From my point of view, better to have kinda unified license generator, that will be checking license during upload and not after upload. You also can upload video without publishing it immediately with aim to check if all ok with audio. Claims generated right after upload. White listing is also good idea. It’s time consuming, but after several whitelisted requests the number of problematic claim will be less. As an option you also can choose authors who do not submit their music to Content ID, but during las years this crowd shrinked, because of multiple cases when author music being stolen and distributed for free.

I completely understand your frustration with getting “re-claims”. These should not occur. If they do, then that means that something is dysfunctional somewhere.

Have you been able to identify a pattern with those re-claims? Such as a specific ContentID third-party service provider (such as AdRev, Identifyy, EliteAlliance,…), or a specific usage (series, variations,…) Maybe there’s a clue out there to identify the cause behind those reclaims.

It sure is a pity that Youtube designed their system that way, hopefully it will improve sooner than later. Unfortunately, we authors can’t do anything about it, as all we do is register our music and that’s it.

Great idea to check which one is generating repeating claims after removing it.

I disagree on those two points. White-listing is not that efficient, as that status may be revoked when there is copyright conflicts. Not a 100% sure with this one, but I heard stories about it not being efficient.

As for choosing deliberately ContentID-free music, this is a really bad idea, as those tracks are often targeted by fraudsters who illegitimately register them. Or, the author simply end up registering down the line.

Thanks for your understanding PurpleFog. I think Elite Alliance and Haawk have been the most problematic, but I have not done a formal study because of the time element.

It really is a pity, that this isn’t sorted out, because it would help everyone. I wish Youtube/Agencies and Music Platforms would have a different set up, where we could just input the licence details with a universal code (that everyone recognised) when we uploaded. This set up would help to stop people using artists content without paying for the right.

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Your suggested set up would be ideal indeed and something we’ve been wishing for for years. Maximum protection of our assets, no hassle for licensees. I don’t understand how this is not a thing yet.

It would be in everybody’s interest, including Youtube’s… or would it? Maybe they have a dark reason not to implement this… who knows?

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Agree with all you said Lumen. Thanks for your thoughts.

Some sort of universal code (that everyone recognised) and was requested at point of upload would go a long way to solving this problem.

I really think this would stop accidental copyright infringement as well. So many casual, small and new creators who break copyright law aren’t doing it out of greed or even apathy. Many don’t even realise they need to pay to use music and visuals. (When we first started, we ourselves were caught out a couple times with posting vlogs filmed in public events and places where popular music was playing in the background – even though we knew we needed licences for actively using content. We weren’t trying to get away with anything, we just didn’t realise.)

Currently there is no consideration for 3rd party licensing on Youtube. So if there was this sort of tick box at point of upload: “Do you have licences for music and visuals in this video?” and “Please input your Licence(s) here”, it would alert people who don’t know. There could even be a little plug/link for where licences could be obtained. It would be a win for everyone.

*There is of course the area: “Licence and distribution” in the Youtube Studio but its significance isn’t clear and anyway there is no mention of 3rd party work. I honestly do not even think the average creator pays much attention to this or really knows what it means.

A simple explanation of basic, bullet point copyright rules, along with a space for uploading our licensing information, would also help everyone.

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