Dan Bull Takes On YouTube's ContentID Changes, Stolen Revenue, With A Diss Track

from the dear-youtube dept

YouTube’s ContentID is receiving an awful lot of well-deserved criticism lately, and the company — true to unfortunate form — still doesn’t seem to realize that it should (a) fix its broken program and (b) actually respond to the criticism. YouTube seems to think that the issue will blow over, but every time there’s another bogus takedown/copyright claim, things seem to get worse. The fact that it’s allowing major labels to claim the revenue of independent artists is a huge problem that needs to be addressed.

In the meantime, many of the people who have built careers off of YouTube are now speaking out against ContentID as well. Dan Bull, who we’ve written about many times before, has put up his latest video, entitled, simply FUCK CONTENT ID, and it calls out the company for taking money from independent creators and handing it over to whoever claims the copyright with no legitimate basis (amusingly, Dan also mocks YouTube’s “copyright free audio library” which he uses as the base of his song).

There are elements of ContentID that are certainly useful, but since the program has been introduced, it’s been plagued with serious problems, providing way too much power to those who make bogus claims. It feels, unfortunately, like YouTube has gotten increasingly complacent on this issue because it has (by far) the majority market share on amateur videos. But things change, and if it continues to make it difficult for content creators, they’re going to go elsewhere. And, yes, YouTube is getting hit from both sides on this issue, as it’s still fighting its lawsuit with Viacom that claimed that the company didn’t do enough to stop infringement. But now the problem seems to be that it defers so easily to claims of infringement that people creating their own content are having it “monetized” by big companies based on nothing. That’s not the right solution at all.

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Companies: google, youtube

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Comments on “Dan Bull Takes On YouTube's ContentID Changes, Stolen Revenue, With A Diss Track”

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46 Comments
Christopher Best (profile) says:

Do they care?

With more and more revenue coming from things like deals with the record labels and partnerships with “channels” or other big players, does YouTube care if a bunch of small, independent creators get ground up in the gears of ContentID?

I’m not saying the creators don’t have a right to be pissed, they’re obviously being screwed over, I’m just saying I still haven’t even seen any actual numbers that they matter financially to Google.

out_of_the_blue says:

Re: With all the shitty comment and channel changes...

Mmm nope they really don’t give a fuck.

Seems the only people they bend over backwards for is the MAFIAA they could not care less about the actual users of the site.. Unless your pewdiepie or some other popular hot shot even then they don’t give a fuck.

ottermaton (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 With all the shitty comment and channel changes...

Then we should be ashamed of ourselves.

No, not really. That was my first “instinct” as well, but in my (and apparently a LOT of other people’s as well) opinion he has done more than enough to earn it.

And you know who’s the only person who could fix it? OOTB. IF he were to begin a string of posting even somewhat reasonable comments without condescension, ad-hom attacks, and general lunacy then I, for one, would back off the reporting. And I’m sure that I’m far from the only one.

Until that day comes (and I’m not holding my breath) I’ll be damned if I feel any shame for reporting a shithead whose only purpose here is to disrupt and draw attention to himself.

ottermaton (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 With all the shitty comment and channel changes...

Except 99.9999% of all his other posts contain “condescension, ad-hom attacks, [or] general lunacy”.

What I’m saying is that OOTB would have to build a track record of NOT making posts like that for me and most likely many others to even consider not hitting the Report button instantaneously.

One reaps what one sows, and I’m not ashamed in the least for giving that jackass what he has earned for himself.

DannyB (profile) says:

Re: Do they care?

does YouTube care if a bunch of small, independent creators get ground up in the gears of ContentID?

The audience of these small, independent creators care. When there is enough of them, it may matter. There may be enough already.

Like many things, it has a beginning, a rise, a peak, and then a decline.

See:
* Facebook
* MySpace
* Yahoo
* Usenet
* CDs, Cassettes, Vinyl scratchy disks
* 8-Track tapes
* Mainframes

Yes, it can even happen to Microsoft and PCs.

Hey YouTube, are you paying attention?

Christopher Best (profile) says:

Re: Re: Do they care?

I don’t think Facebook is necessarily in its “decline” phase yet.

And Yahoo? Have you seen their traffic numbers? Their financials? Just because those of us in the “tech bubble” don’t think of Yahoo as relevant, it doesn’t change the fact that there are still millions of adults that still have Yahoo as their home page.

And that’s kind of my point: I think people who are “tech insiders” really suffer from a bad echo chamber effect, thinking most people share their interests and beliefs. All signs point to the vast majority of people going to YouTube to watch music videos and watch viral videos of cats being… cats… Is the audience of the independent content creators even a drop in the revenue bucket?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Do they care?

Maybe not yet but things change. What was once considered privileged knowledge a century ago quickly becomes common sense today. The general population will catch up to the current intellect of those in the ‘tech world’.

For example, back in the days someone who could type 120 WPM could get very high pay. Now people that can type that fast are a dime a dozen (then again word processors and the ability to go back and easily re-correct what you type without having to re-type the entire page on a typewriter partly contributes to that but even so typing is just a skill that everyone has these days).

The younger generation is much more keen to the corrupt nature of politics in America than the past and this problem is only going to get worse for politicians and it will make it much more difficult for them to pass and maintain corrupt laws.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Do they care?

The real problem is that the laws are almost entirely written by and for these giant industry players and they make it very difficult and expensive for anyone to host user generated content. The laws need to change.

Also, government established broadcasting and cableco monopolies given to private entities or used for commercial purposes need to be abolished. They exist only because big cartels lobbied for these laws.

Anonymous Coward says:

the biggest issue is that it is owned by Google. google thinks it is the best thing since sliced bread. you tell me how to even contact Google, let alone speak to someone to get any sort of reply. to get anything done is next to impossible for the same reason. Google thinks it is the best thing since sliced bread! it is constantly being hit for things it shouldn’t be, but never about things it should be. perhaps it’s about time Congress started looking at the true nature of Google instead of the fictitious and stupid things and tried to do something about them. regardless of how many people are employed by Google, there isn’t enough because there’s never anyone around when needed. very much like the police.

ChrisB (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Google is in a terrible position. They are attacked by Apple and Microsoft through their Rockstar patent troll, moronic politicians want them to regulate the internet, and the evil NSA forces them to give away secrets. Users love them, because they give almost everything away for free. But of course, users don’t count where the government is involved.

anonymouse says:

Re: Re:

Google has provided free services to everyone, and if you cannot see this you are blind. People dont mind someone like google accessing their data to a certain extent but going over the top is not acceptable, i dont mind advertismants that are pushed on me and are relvelnt to me as long as they dont give my private data to entities that will use it to harass me, and also that not every little bit of data is given to just anyone.

I am happy to let Google take a little but not everything as they are at the moment one of the most innovative Google is not that bad , they do use customers data to supply what they belive is a better service, but as long as they are not giving that data to a third party they should be fine, they are a very innovative company that has given the population of the world many many free services that are used every day and they should be applauded for that, maybe making data a little more anonymous would help or ensuring that customer data is not freely available to just anyone would be something that Google could do , but remember if it was not for Google we would not have things like Google earth Google maps gmail and a host of other services. Damn we probably would not have $100 tablets or even $50 tablets if it was not for Google supporting and making android free.

In this instance Google needs to come up with a solution that makes the content providers happy, but they need to remember that the customers are the bread and butter of Google and they come first.

Anonymous Coward says:

There needs to be a law

First, amend the DMCA to allow those accused of infringement the opportunity to prevent a takedown by filing a proper counter-notice. Second, amend it so significant damages are owed to those who are falsely accused or infringement if the entity claiming infringement knew or should have known no infringement took place. Finally, make it a copyright violation for claimants to monetize videos posted by third parties in cases involving fair use / non-infringement, as a form of copyfraud.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: There needs to be a law

This ^^^^^^^

Also make protection lengths substantially shorter.

These are some useful changes. But the problem is that politicians don’t write laws for the populations. Politicians mostly write laws so that they can receive campaign contributions and revolving door favors from giant cartels.

Quiet Lurcker says:

Re: There needs to be a law

As I understand it, there are provisions for counter-notice and damages. BUT. Those provisions are decidedly slanted in favor of big content and (if memory serves) in the one or two cases that got litigated, the courts found in favor of big content for what I consider to be specious reasons.

What we need is to see the DMCA altered to give equal protection to both big content, and the people they’re accusing of copyright infringement, with mandatory fines in HUGE (in excess of $1 million per count) amounts for all false claims and criminal prosecution for claims that are known by the claimants to be false.

Anonymous Coward says:

Disproportionate claims and abuse.

There are several cases where a long video (30 mins+) is hit with a claim for 3 seconds of a song. You can argue that the song may be protected, the uploader doesn’t have rights to distribute and so on, and it is OK. But, why then give the whole video to the song owner?

There are cases where an image is used for seconds, rendering the whole video owned by some claimant.

It is disproportionate. It is abuse.

Ok, let’s pretend that copyright is not the rent system that we know it is and pretend that it deserves in fact some level of respect. Then, let’s be honest, if you have a claim for a song that plays for 3 seconds on a video, you get to own, those 3 seconds. Only and not the whole video. The same with images, or whatever else.

Better yet, instead of owning any part of it, you get a proportional share from the revenue generated by the video. Your song is used for 10 seconds on a 10 hour video… you get that.

The present system, removes complete ownership from a video after a claim. It’s abuse. It’s prone to abuse. It’s being abused. Like Dan Bull exemplifies in this song, you can create a false claim and keep ALL the revenue for 4 weeks. No questions asked.

Aside from all that, there are many things wrong with the automated system. One of my videos, an old one, was using a Jamendo song, when it was made and uploaded, the song was licensed under a CC license, No Commercial and With Attribution. Since my videos don’t have ads and I placed a link to the song page on Jamendo, both in the description and in the video, I was (in my view) following the rules. Since then, Jamendo changed their licensing policy and it is now a rent collection system. My video was hit with a copyright violation. I had a choice between allowing them to put ads on the video or silencing the music. I chose to silence it. I don’t want ads. 2 days later, the same. I did it again. 2 days later, the same. Why? Because, even though the video didn’t play any music when being viewed, the uploaded one still had it there, so I kept being hit. I simply deleted the video. From now on, I will not even bother with remedial options, it’s hit, I delete. But, that’s me, I don’t make money from them, or even want to.

Those that chose to build a living out of it, are screwed.

anonymouse says:

Re: Disproportionate claims and abuse.

Could people not jsut swamp Youtube with claims, i mena if they want to take my creation and generatemoney for the studios surely i can do the same and claim for their content so that they lose income and i gain it , for a short while anyways.

If more and more people just claimed copyright to studios content on some claim that they created the song many years ago in their bedroom then the studios would lose a hell of a lot of income and demand the situation be resolved, maybe this is something people need to do en mass, millions of claims a day so that Google is in a situation where they have no option but to do something to resolve this problem citizens are having with the studios theft.
I mean what is Google going to do blacklist your ip address when you use a proxy server.

There is a lot of money to be made if people start claiming studios content as there own.

That One Guy (profile) says:

Re: Re: Disproportionate claims and abuse.

That assumes it’s even possible to claim studio content like that, given the entire reason YT/Google introduced ContentID was in an attempt to appease those parasites, I’d bet any attempted claims would not only be automatically rejected by the system, the one making the claim would probably find themselves on the receiving end of a strike and a very unfriendly ‘warning’ not to try it again.

mr. sim (profile) says:

i have said it once and will say it again… they are going to do this until someone sues content id and the media companies falsely claiming copyright on others work getting the ridiculous punitive damages.

if you claim in a dcma notice to own something someone else owns you open yourself to these damages. i eagerly wait to see someone hand themselves a serious whooping with the automated dcma’s

Anonymous Coward says:

Crazy theory about why Google is so bad at responding to complaints.

How to sieve the crazy from the good complaints, the important from the unimportant?

Wait and see which ones grows and which ones don’t.

Well that is my theory so if anybody wants to get a response from Google they need to make a lot of noise, they probably have a threshold in there somewhere.

That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Step 1 –
If the complaint is from a member of any **AA group, it is most likely flawed and overreaching.

Step 2 –
Force Congress to actually put real teeth into the lip service in the law now for bad complaints.

Step 3 –
Remove the “belief” aspect to a law. Law needs to deal with fact not feelings, and if it can not pass a test of all of the legal elements its a flawed complaint.

Step 4 –
Stop screwing the biggest shareholders in copyright. They seem to have forgotten that there are supposed to be benefits to the public, not the burdens and costs from granting a “limited” monopoly to rightholders.

Step 5 –
Stop making Google responsible for everything “internet”. The **AA membership is using its monopoly power to cost a competitor millions of dollars meeting demands that only exist in their minds not in law. A simple change to the law allowing costs to be recovered from these meritless lawsuits that they use to obtain Google’s acquiescence to their demands might change the field.

Google is trying to deal with a firehose of claims, the problem is if they don’t move quick enough for the big guys they end up with Gov investigations, lawsuits, and well they are a corporation first.

Maybe the **AA’s will win and finally make YouTube as useless as they wanted it to be from the beginning. Hopefully we can get some sanity in the law to allow the next disruptive force a shot in the market without having to kowtow to the **AA’s demands that exceed the law.

anonymouse says:

real theft!!!!

This is the studios claiming income that is not theirs that is straight out theft, maybe one or two cases where they are forced to pay the 150 000 dollars in damages they claim for each infringement is the way to go, just a few cases where people manage to get a positive outcome from a court case and the studios and Youtube will be in a very difficult situation as they have taken income from many many people for no reason other than they can.

Pseudononymous says:

the problem is bigger than just this, even with going to another video service – there are some networks willing to download videos that don’t belong to them and monetize it anyways on youtube.

So even if you took your videos to another service, no body is doing anything to stop anyone else with a content id account, from grabbing your videos from another service and monetizing them in youtube.

These guys are monetizing the presidents 2008 speech shamelessly on the changedotgov youtube channel and the government isn’t doing anything about it. when I saw that, I took it as the US endorsing this practice.

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