Rhodri Marsden: Why did my YouTube account get closed down?
Wednesday 12 August 2009
Anyone whose participation in the YouTube community goes beyond staring at videos of cats walking up and down piano keyboards will be aware of the message that greets you when you upload a clip to the site. "Do not upload TV shows, music videos or commercials without permission," it says, "unless they consist entirely of content that you created yourself."
This warning, however, seems to be taken by most people as a bit of casual advice along the lines of "I wouldn't go out without an umbrella if I were you". After all, the site is awash with concert footage, sporting moments and comedy clips, most of which have been put there by the public in direct contravention of the rules. In fact, it's partly this wholesale disobedience that has made YouTube so popular.
Which might suggest that there are no consequences for uploading copyrighted material, so we may as well embark in a frenzy of video sharing. But your shamefaced technology correspondent had his entire YouTube account closed down last week; most of my uploads were personal videos, but on three occasions I'd put up TV clips that I wanted to draw people's attention to on various blogs.
I won't bother trying to elicit sympathy – after all, I broke the rules. If I'd had a case to argue I could have served a counternotice and possibly got my video and indeed my account back. But it did make me wonder about about the countless YouTube videos that infringe copyright but neverthless stay online.
They fall into three categories: either the copyright holder doesn't know it's there (although more of them are being notified immediately these days by joining YouTube's Content ID system) or they simply don't care, or, as is increasingly common, they choose to leave it online while receiving a cut of proceeds from advertising. But – as I found the hard way – you can never guarantee the benevolence of copyright holders. So if you are going to take your chances, and you value the videos you've uploaded over the years, at least make sure you have them all backed up. Just like I didn't.
Life & Style blogs
The psychology of flirtation: how to know when someone's interested
YouTube star Loey Lane hits back at hateful comments about ‘fat girls in bikinis’ and how plus-size women promote obesity
Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year, says study
The age of inactivity: How laziness is killing us
What do the emojis on Snapchat mean?
The moment a Queen's Guard soldier lost it and drew his gun at annoying tourist
Greece crisis: The wider lesson is that it’s time to abandon this failed experiment in currencies
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
Extend Right To Buy to tenants of private landlords, Labour's Jeremy Corbyn says
David Cameron struck double blow in his hopes to win Britain a new EU deal
Pentagon accuses Russia of 'playing with fire' over nuclear threats towards Nato
- 1 Michael Douglas regrets 'embarrassing' Catherine Zeta-Jones with oral sex comments
- 2 Tunisia hotel attack: Locals form 'human shield' to protect hotel from gunman Seifeddine Rezgui
- 3 Tunisian builder has been hailed a hero after knocking gunman to the ground with roof tiles
- 4 German ethics council calls for incest between siblings to be legalised by Government
- 5 E.L James's #AskELJames Twitter Q&A didn't go exactly as planned
iJobs Gadgets & Tech
£500 - £600 per day: Recruitment Genius: A Senior Solution Architect is requir...
£22500 - £27000 per annum + OTE £45K: SThree: Since our inception in 1986, STh...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity for a Software...
£40000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Do you love PHP and working wit...