YouTube and Copyright

Hi Digital Diary Followers

Copyright is seemingly intertwined with content industries and their attempts to control and consolidate convergence. With this issue in mind I turned immediately to the hub of copyright infringement, YouTube. It did not take long until I found ample examples of where a breach of copyright had occurred.

Although vastly responsible for thousands of cases of copyright infringement each day YouTube isn’t actually responsible for copyright violations of its users (Warren, 2012).  Only when YouTube receives a takedown notice by a rights holder does it deal with the content. Interestingly it seems to be big business dominating the use of these notices. This can be seen in the case of Sega issuing a takedown notices on all channels with footage or commentary regarding the game “Shining Force III”.

Because YouTube only acts as a facilitator of content it has come under major scrutiny and copyright lawsuits especially from the content industries. Because of this YouTube has turned to the process of convergent technology in the form of Content ID.

“Rights holders deliver YouTube reference files (audio-only or video) of content they own, metadata describing that content, and policies on what they want YouTube to do when we find a match.” (YouTube, 2013)

The development of Content ID leads to content creators having to live in a permission culture. Interestingly once a match has been established most copyright holders will allow for the content to be published because this allows for benefit through exposure, advertising and linked sales (Gould-Stewart).  So if content industries see a financial gain through illegally copyrighted material they are less likely to take the content down and in turn are basically using copyright in a “win-win” situation. This can be seen in the case of the JK Wedding Entrance Dance. It is fairly obvious that the happy couple is in breach of copyright by using the song “Forever” by Chris Brown. However rather than blocking the content Sony actually allowed the upload and coupled it with advertising and links to ITunes and the considered “expired song” went back to number four on the ITunes charts (Gould-Stewart).

So in the case of YouTube it seems that copyright is almost being used as a weapon for content industries to stay afloat and aligned with today’s convergent society.


One thought on “YouTube and Copyright

  1. Pingback: A Reflective Perspective 2.0 | Digital Diary

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