Saturday, November 24, 2012

Music Industry Predators

The music industry is fighting back against copyright infringement in the same way that Japanese pilots turned their planes into missiles near the end of the war.  In a desperate attempt to win in a war that is already lost, the music industry has cast a broad net to try and clean up the copyright violations on YouTube.  At the time of this writing I have responded to five false claims of copyright infringement on this video.  There is no music in this video, yet each time it is tagged there is a digital rights management company (Often "The Orchard" or one of its subsidiary companies) claiming that some obscure piece of music is being played in the video.

When a claim is made against a video, all ad revenue is stopped.  This means that I, as the true rights holder to the video, can no longer earn any income from the video.  At the same time, the company making the claim now has the ability to post ads on my video, and all ad revenue goes to them, as they have made a claim that they own the rights to the content.  In a strange twist of the rules, the music industry is now making money on media that they did not create, and that they have no rights to whatsoever.  They have found a way to steal digital rights income from other people, even when there is no music involved.

There is no human involvement in this process.  The digital rights management company simply makes a claim to the YouTube machine and starts making money on the videos.  As a YouTube up-loader I have the right to appeal the decision, but losing a series of appeals will result in having my YouTube account flagged for copyright violations.  The on-screen warnings indicate that this can lead to having my account closed and all videos deleted. 

If I file an appeal, it is not heard by YouTube staff.  The appeal goes to the company that filed the claim.  They have the ability to insist that they are correct in the absence of any evidence and without arbitration.  The music industry can shut down any YouTube user and eliminate their ability to make legitimate money on their own material.

The music industry has become the new cyber-bully on YouTube.  They are not making these false claims against obscure videos that are not being viewed.  They are targeting videos that are being viewed and generating ad revenue.  They are stealing ad revenue from people like me by doing this on a massive scale and making claims on (probably) hundreds of thousands of videos.  Others have posted that they have finally given up on the appeals process and just let it go.  Now the digital rights management company is making the ad revenue on those videos and earning large sums of money every month on material they do not own.

YouTube needs to wake up and modify their digital rights process.  They have allowed a bull to run freely in the china shop because they don't want to be the target of legal action.  Google and YouTube are a part of the problem.  They don't care if the ad revenue goes to the wrong person, because they make the same amount of money either way.

Click the image below to see the last two claims made against my video:

1 comment:

  1. Wow, Jim, that is so bad. I had one last year and I appealed it (to youtube as far as I knew) and no problem. Perhaps the rules have changed since then? And same as you, there was no music whatsoever in the the video. I did not even know I was losing earnings while the appeal was going through!