YouTube Copyright Violation on purchased track

freelancer

#1

Hi folks, I just got a copyright violation on YouTube and have lost the ability to monetize a video containing this track: (https://audiojungle.net/item/game-results-loop/6472473), I bought from AudioJungle. I work often with stock music and I’m shocked that anyone would register a royalty-free track with Content ID. It’s a huge no-no in the production industry, because it causes so many headaches, even when it is resolved happily, which sometimes it is not. I understand registering the watermarked versions, but registering full, paid-for versions is unbelievable.

The track was bought over a year ago, and even now, there’s no notice on the site that purchasing that track and using it on YouTube will immediately result in a copyright violation. If I had any idea I’d have to deal with this, I never would have bought the track. As it stands, I’ve lost partial control of the video and YouTube is claiming that it may take up to a month (!!!) to fix.

I’m aware that AudioJungle has a dedicated pages on how to fix this issue after the fact, but I just cannot understand why this would be allowed in the first place. This is the exact same process I’d have to go through if I had licensed a Kanye West or Taylor Swift track to use in a YouTube video. For a sub-$20 stock music loop!

Please tell me Envato is willing to reconsider this policy, it hurts buyers and makes them look ridiculous in front of their clients. If this continues to be the policy moving forward, I’m certainly not going to keep the site as my go-to for stock creative, and will encourage everyone I know to do the same.


#2

ContentID generates Copyright Notices, not copyright violations. Most music is now (or soon will be) registered with ContentID which is becoming industry standard. Unfortunately, in light of the massive thefts authors are confronted to, it has become indispensable.

The track you’ve bought is noted as being registered with AdRev on the right hand sidebar. But authors also have to put a message in the description, and here it seems to be missing.

If you copy paste your license info in the message box on the AdRev contact page, the claim is lifted in hours (48 hours at the most in case it happens during a weekend).

The claim is just a standard process in which you merely have to provide a valid license that allows you to use the track. Which is exactly why you bought the license in the first place.

No need to feel ridiculous in front of your clients, since you have the license to use the track and lift the claim. This is just a verification step in the video uploading process.


#3

Sadly, it will need to become a industry standard from the authors perspective. (regarding Content ID).
Theft of royalty free songs is out of control, where even thieves can claim the music they have stolen, as their own.

And in short, all you need to is prove that you have the license right? It can be resolved within 24/48 hours and all is like it was before the notice.


#4

As annoying as it might seem at first for the clients, I have to fully agree with PurpleFogSound. The removal of the notice is really simple and quick if you have a license.
It is true, for maximum transparency, the author should always put a warning in the description rather than just in the metadata sidebar. Not only that, but in our opinion, the musician should always be able to offer personal support regarding any matter for the client. This is a personal business model which may vary and one bad example shouldn’t trash the whole system.
I would kindly like to remind that Royalty Free music isn’t an alternate way of saying “cheap music w/o copyright rights”. It is music which might still take days or weeks to be completed and put on a market aiming at helping content creators. It is fair to us that theft doesn’t stay uncompromised while, at the same time, giving our clients an easy way out. 'Cause once you prove your license the music stays, in fact, royalty free.

We personally have a small portfolio on Audiojungle for now, and yet there already are massive duplicates on YouTube and Vimeo of videos using our music from our regular clients. It is frustrating for us to see that and it is unfair toward the clients that have paid as well.

We hope you can get used to this little side step, be able to respect our desire in protecting our craft as anyone else and stay in this community :slight_smile:
If the ContentID is AdRev, save this link in a note for whenever you need it: http://adrev.net/contact-us and follow the few instructions and your video will be ready to shine within a few hours.
Have a nice day.


#5

AdRev is often a total inconvenience for video production houses like ourselves, as we have no contact with the end-user (the client) – which means we can’t sort out these notices directly.

We provide completed video sequences to advertising agencies, who then pass the finished file to the client – who is promptly emailed with a copyright notice. This makes the ad agency look unprofessional for not correctly licensing the audio and, in turn, makes the production house (us) look as though we haven’t done so either – even though the music has been licensed for use.

We’re currently avoiding the use of AdRev tagged music (where possible) in cases where we’ll have no access to the end-user’s YouTube account, to mop-up these annoying notices. Unfortunately this includes many of our major, blue-chip accounts.


#6

I totally understand how ContentID can be perceived as inconvenient for video production houses. But I think it’s merely a question of perception.

A copyright notice makes you look bad in front of your clients. It feels like an accusation, you may be worried about the good standing of your Youtube account or your client’s,…

This is just how you may perceive it, because it’s (somewhat) new, you may not know exactly how to deal with it. Because it requires an extra step that you have not yet implemented in your process. Some may even think it’s all a con set up by greedy authors who tricked you to milk you some more.

The thing is, ContentID is here to stay and it will become global. Sooner than later, only public domain and Creative Commons music will remain unregistered. So, if you don’t want to drastically reduce your choice of tracks, you will need to shift your perception of ContentID.

A copyright notice merely states that there is copyrighted material in the video and who the copyright owner is. It’s not judgmental and does not affect the standing of your account.

It should be perceived as the final step of the uploading process. You buy a license to be able to use the music, you upload a video to Youtube, Youtube notifies you there is copyrighted material, you show the license that allows you to use the music and you’re all set.

Now when you pass your work along to your client, you just have to indicate that there is copyrighted material in the video that needs a license to be able to use, and include the said license.

Using copyrighted material is nothing to be ashamed of, if you have the license to use it. It does not make you look less professional, on the contrary. You just have to make sure your client is aware of this and will know what to do when they receive the notice.


#7

Totally agree, the music industry is living a paradigm sift, you adapt to changes or bye bye.


#8

Embedding the license PDF with the video to your client, or to the agency which will pass it to their client is not an option? Doesn’t sound as an outrageous process and it keeps everybody happy and in rule. If anything, a license provided to a client should be a further proof of quality and legitimacy.


#9

There are mark-up charges, at each tier of a video production journey, which would be undermined by directing the end-client to the source of assets – in this case the relative low cost of Audio Jungle licensing.

AdRev notices are fine for small accounts, but a total whistle-blower for the big spending clients.

Ironically, in these situations, it would be better if Audio Jungle license costs were more in-line with those of Rights-Managed music.

To put it plainly, marketing/ad agencies will not want their large accounts to know that their music only cost $30 to license. We would rather source from RM agencies and take a smaller cut. This, I’m afraid, is the mentality of big-budget productions - as low costs are indicative of poor quality, in the eyes of the client. Sad but true.


#10

I appreciate the feedback on my original post. I think I overestimated the relative professional level of most of AudioJungle’s buyer base. It’s quite clear that this issue is only a concern for a handful of higher-end producers with clients a bit more sophisticated in the process. Smaller clients and smaller projects have no reason to feel clearing copyright notices every time you upload a video to YouTube (in some cases 5-10 times a day) is a cost-impacting burden. Unfortunately, at my place in the chain, it’s really not where the industry is headed, and clients are not going to accept it as a part of doing business. Clients are not web savvy and if they get a warning from YouTube that they have a copyright violation that can take up to 30 days to be corrected, they will freak out.

They’d be more likely to commission music with exclusive licenses than to have to deal with multiple copyright notices per video every single time they upload. In addition, there are a number of other major outlets that specifically guarantee that tracks they sell won’t flag in content ID. While they may be a higher cost upfront, if an extra $50 saves me $150 in lost time sending emails around to YouTube, the client, and AudioJungle every time, it’s an easy decision.

I would, however, request that AudioJungle do their due diligence and make damn sure buyers are aware that tracks purchased will flag in content ID and exactly how time consuming the process is to correct, before the purchase. Doing anything less is very poor customer service.


#11

So, the real issue is that your client may find out they paid much more for music than it actually cost? That you or someone else at another tier is making more money than the author on the music alone?

If the client has a big budget and think low cost equates to low quality, why not get music from higher end libraries and let the author get a fair remuneration?

What you’re describing is infuriating for music authors and explains a lot the dire situation our profession is in.


#12

We cannot be blamed for the low prices on Audio Jungle. We’ve been producing video content for over 20 years with clients who have always been happy to absorb ‘search and selection’ costs, far above the initial license fee. Royalty free music never even existed when we began.

The reality is that you are either aiming your music at high-end, agency use or at self-publishing YouTubers. These are two very different markets.

Your ‘dire situation’ can only be resolved by a clearer understanding of the industry in which you wish to provide for. Higher profile or mass distribution – rarely both.


#13

Clearing a claim requires only a quick copy paste of the license. Then you wait a couple hours for the claim to be lifted. There’s no need for lengthy back and forth mail exchange.

If this is too much of a hassle and you do have a budget to commission music, then why not do that indeed? That way the author could get a fair remuneration.

Although, I’m not sure that briefing the author, waiting for the track to be composed and produced, validating the final draft, writing/signing the exclusive license, then dealing with rights, cue sheets and PROs, is more cost/time efficient than copy-pasting an AJ license in the AdRev message box. Isn’t it why higher-end producers come to AJ in the first place?

As for other marketplaces that guarantee ContentID-free, they will not hold that policy for long. 1) Because soon, no author will agree to publish their work without registering it to ContentID and so they will leave those marketplaces - 2) Because, unfortunately music that is not yet registered may (and probably will) be registered by thieves looking to monetize what is not theirs (this is happening on a large scale).

The whole music industry is indeed headed towards ContentID and fingerprinting. You will have to adapt to this new paradigm one way or the other.


#14

What infuriating is that the pirates will carry on as usual, finding a way around the Content ID system, yet it’s the legitimate license payers who have to go through these hoops and prove themselves, time and time again.


#15

Well originally, Audiojungle was aiming at self-publishing Youtubers. Hence the low prices. Low prices that make sense to the author only if it’s aimed at mass distribution.

Having higher-end clients coming in is a great thing but it raises the question of having more professional licenses available. I fully agree with you on AJ having to have a clearer understanding of the industry in which we wish to provide for. Most issues come from this.

The situation in which you have a starving music author on one hand and a video producer who’s ashamed of how little the music cost on the other hand is ironically insane and completely unsustainable for both parties.


#16

People pirating like normal was not the biggest reason for the switch to Content ID. Some were pirating and then registering music to Content ID that they did not own the rights to. So basically clients were getting the copyright notices and the actual author of the music couldn’t do anything to help because someone had illegally registered the music before them. Registering prevents people from stealing and then trying to pass off the music as their own. I do understand your concern though, the system is not ideal yet.


#17

I get your pain man. But it’s easy to clear your video.
This image will help you understand our situation with unauthorised usage of our music.
11 pages more than 300 videos using this track without permission. JUST ONE TRACK


#18

Just to chip in, I’ll agree with most of what is said here.

It’s easy to understand why a client paying $$.$$$ for a project gets upset from first having to deal with annoying copyright claims and then finding out the music was only $$.

It’s also fairly comprehensible why an ad agency and/or video producer would rather not deal with these things at all. However, marking up a $19 track to a level where the client expects more than they get, that’s not really in line with where the audio market is going. Either be clear that you’ve made a stunning deal for the music, and lower your prices, or if that doesn’t work, buy what you need for what it costs. Blaming ContentID for protecting copyright, Envato for being competitive, or freelancing authors for making big music at a small price isn’t helping.

Speaking for the music/audio part of the picture, yes we would LOVE to sell exclusive, expensive, non-AdRev licences all day and night. But AJ is not really catering to the market that would support a higher price point. Instead, AJ provides an affordable alternative for small businesses, and incredible value for those who wish to “mark up” the music and put the money in their own pockets.

As have been pointed out, you may find other RF outlets that claim to be ContentID free. But how can they even claim that? ContentID exists, it’s an integral part of YouTube, and almost anyone can misuse the system by registering other people’s music thus creating head-aching claims out of thin air. This has happened, is happening, and will happen again, since all you need to claim ownership of a track is an mp3 file and a genuinely evil mindset.

Clients need to learn about these things. You must teach them. There is no alternative.

Well then! Hit up the AJ author on Envato Studio, and ask for an exclusive, customised, similar track for $5,000. Problem solved, everybody wins.

They have a YouTube channel of their own, but they are not web savvy? Someone should help them managing their channel. Copyright claims can and should be dealt with before the video is released publicly.

I do understand the potential for frustration, especially if there’s no direct link between video producer and client, but for crying out loud, if you’re in the business of publishing ads or videos, get with the program :sunglasses:

Not to offend anyone, so please stay calm and carry on, but after spending half a lifetime trying to make a dollar and a cent in the music world, this is really what it boils down to for me:

(1) Pay me more.

OR

(2) Stop complaining.

No hitherto displayed amount of “inconvenience”, “markup embarrassment”, or “loss of time spent emailing” is comparable to the constant struggling, adapting, indignifying, humiliation and ignorance most professional musicians wake up to face every day. We live in a world where 90% of our competitors are kids or hobbyists, and 90% of our potential customer base would rather pirate or steal our music given the slightest chance. We’re now in a phase where $19 (less fees) is considered enough to compensate for using a track more or less indefinitely on the web, meaning it’s subject to spreading like wildfire on YouTube and pirate websites, plus we’re implicitly expected to help customers out with AdRev claims (yes, we lose time emailing as well).

As much as I would like to help every production company in the world with their “freaked out” clients, I’m sorry but at $19 it’s a no from me. The real problems this business is facing is of a much grander nature. As an example, a few days ago I received this comment on my YouTube channel (it’s not the first):

I think that pretty much sums it up.

Music isn’t “undervalued” or anything like that, I’m not an idealist and the last thing the world needs is another piece of music. But really, in a world where $20 is considered “steep” for licensing a track, please don’t come crying to me when your clients are outraged by the difference between your invoice and the actual cost. Just lower your prices already, or better yet, hit us up on Envato Studio and pay us what you need to pay. :sunglasses:

Thanks for the insights though and good luck with clearing your claims.

Cheers!


#19

IOne aspect of this that seems very unacceptable to me is authors in effect being forced to go down the adrev route because of other people falsely registering tracks with adrev as their own. Surely Adrev has some responsibilities and accountabilities here? Firstly, to do at least some basic checks on people’s credentials. Secondly if it keeps happening allowing the authors in question to register their music with adrev but with the option of not having take down notices etc, simply to stop others falsely registering the tracks as their own. Authors would then have a choice whether to have notices issued and monitize pirate usage.


#20

As an author who uses Adrev for content ID, I don’t know why this is considered such a ‘no no’. At the end of the day it’s simply a way to protect your music from unlawful use on YouTube. It’s not about collecting royalties or making a quick buck. If I had the choice, I wouldn’t use it as it probably puts off a fair number of potential buyers here on AJ. However, the scenario where someone steals my music and registers it as their own is a far worse situation, and one that I’m certainly not prepared to let happen.