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Good news: Despite Google's new privacy policy, not much has changed. They are not policing what you do, they're simply just trying to give you faster service and specify which ads to show you. Uploading videos on YouTube is the same as it was before; they're not telling anyone who you are or sending you directly to jail, they're just letting you upload but also telling you when someone claimed it and if you're still allowed to keep it online (with or without ads/blocking it in certain countries) or when it has to go.

Bad news: They've changed the formatting of YouTube. Some of their changes have refreshed the site (the new analytics page is WAY better than it was before, which I had no idea how to use or comprehend) yet at the same time we now all have boring-ass channels.

But here's the worst thing.

I was browsing through my uploaded videos on YT that contain copyrighted material and clicked on the links describing the copyright information. Here's how it was formated:

(NOTE: The format has changed a little as of December 28, 2012, but here I'm describing my first reaction and you should get the gist of the whole thing)

-Title of Video-

"Your video may include the following copyrighted content:"

-Name of copyrighted material, name of copyright owner, name of distributer-

-Button to press to say that you acknowledge that the copyright claim is, in fact, valid-

"What does this mean?"

-Information of the copyright status, on how it may be blocked in certain countries, if it is still available worldwide, etc., how ads may appear, how that status can change, and a link to know more about YouTube/copyright relationships-

"This claim DOES NOT AFFECT your account status."

-Link to second page if you feel that the claim is not valid-

So I checked out the second page to see what I can do. Format:

"I believe this copyright claim is not valid because:

-I own the CD / DVD or bought the song online.
-I'm not selling the video or making any money from it.
-I gave credit in the video.
-The video is my original content and I own all of the rights to it.
-I have a license or written permission from the content owner to use this material.
-My use of the content meets the legal requirements for fair use or fair dealing under applicable copyright laws.
-The content is in the public domain or is not eligible for copyright protection."

So at first I'm thinking, "Wow, they FINALLY acknowledge that everybody's doing it and we need more lenience when it comes to using copyrighted material! Real freedom at last!"

So I clicked on the button on how I don't think I should have this copyright claim on my back because I am not making any money from it and therefore I should not be made guilty for posting it.

Here's how the third page was formatted:

"I'm not selling the video or making any money from it.
Whether or not you benefit financially from using the content doesn't matter. Unless you have permission from the owner, it's not yours to use."

-Button to press that says you acknowledge this-




This...really pisses me off. You want to know why? Because it's a FUCKING TEASE.

Beforehand, if you wanted to file a dispute, it had two crystal clear columns stating what WAS a legit reason to file a dispute and what was not. You simply looked at the column that stated what you COULD use to file a dispute and went for that. But now, this...this is literally the biggest dick move I've ever seen from YouTube, taunting us with the belief that we have a little more freedom to use copyrighted material but then going "LOL nope, sorry, we were only kidding. We put that there to trick you into paying attention only to say you can't use it. Sorry. But hey! At least you can ACKNOWLEDGE that we're fucking with you so that you don't feel too bad about it? Amirite?"

And what is with this whole "I acknowledge" button? Apparently it's to show that you have reviewed the claim on the video. I don't know about you, but I am REALLY fucking scared to click on it. On one hand, it could get the copyright holders to ease their grip on me if I comply, but on another hand it could be used to blackmail and/or disadvantage me. The big question is, will this button tell Google and YouTube I acknowledge this or will it tell the copyright holder? Apparently, if you 'acknowledge' you can still dispute later, but it does show that things have changed slightly. But how much so?

So the only legit reasons to file the dispute would be:

"-The video is my original content and I own all of the rights to it. (Though they warn you to consider ALL material used in the video in case it contains anything copyrighted before you continue with the dispute process.)
-I have a license or written permission from the content owner to use this material.
-My use of the content meets the legal requirements for fair use or fair dealing under applicable copyright laws.
-The content is in the public domain or is not eligible for copyright protection."

Thankfully the legit reasons outweight the illegit reasons to file a dispute, but at the same time I'm still cautious.

First off, if you click on a legit reason, it says you CAN file a dispute, but might want to take legal counsel before submitting the dispute. Who the fuck is going to seek legal counsel over a video? If anything, that might make the judicial system aware of your (not illegal, but simply not legal) hobbies and use it against you! (That and it takes too long and uses too much money and it's really pointless.)

But if you decide to continue with the dispute, you have to fill out a box explaining why you think your video falls under the fair use category. One of the best ways to dispute is with this beautiful little argument:

This video is fair use under U.S. copyright law because it is (1) noncommercial, (2) transformative in nature and (3) does not compete with the original work and could have no negative effect on its market. (In other words, this is a very formal way of saying "I'm not selling the video or making any money from it" by pointing out 'non-profit use' is technically a legit form of 'fair use' set out under copyright law.)

Then they make you write your whole name and check a 'statement of good faith' to show that you sincerely believe that the claim was a result of mistake or misidentification (although you know in reality that it's not entirely true), and that you are not intentionally abusing this dispute process. (And that you understand that filing fraudulent disputes will result in the termination of your YouTube account.)

This...this is just too risky.

Telling third parties your real name is scary enough, but with Google's new privacy policy, who knows what else could be used to your disadvantage by telling these people your full name? I'd like to believe not much, but still, you just never know. But what's even worse is the whole "termination of my account if the dispute is fraudulent". I'm not sure if this has ever been stated before (and I'm not sure if it would lead to the immediate termination of the account if the dispute is fraudulent or if it's just a threat) but it is fucking chilly. If there's a chance that my dispute could be rejected and claimed 'fraudulent', and ultimately lead to a strike against my precious account, I'm not filing a fucking dispute!

Yes, the main problem with filing disputes is that it doesn't always work. Some companies may say "Oh, right, it DOES technically fall under fair use so we should back off" and others will go "Oh hell no, this is OUR material and we are not going to relinquish our claim from it so that the world will know it's ours. Besides which, who cares about a silly little thing called 'fair use'?"

A long time ago, I filed a dispute for a video that contained content from SME. And for a little while, it worked. My video was temporarily available worldwide. But then, the dispute was ultimately rejected. AND I CAN'T FILE ANOTHER DISPUTE. Apparently, when a dispute is rejected, you can instead file a DMCA counter-notice, which sometimes works in cases where your video is re-blocked saying "all copyright owners have confirmed their claims against your video." But considering how these people didn't pay attention to you the first time, who's to know if they'll listen to you a second time? And, more importantly, will you get into trouble if you take this to court? (I ultimately took down the video, by the way.)

I'm just going to say this: Copyright is EVIL. Why? Because it is sorely misused. I can totally understand how copyright owners would want to have rules to prevent people from passing material off as their own or directly making money off of it, but a lot of the time copyright is used incorrectly. Copyright owners abuse their power to ignore significant little things like "fair use", "freedom of expression", "showing love for certain products" and "harmless fun" to limit freedom online and make THEMSELVES look like the victim. Katy Perry's song "E.T." was once widely available but now all of a sudden many wonderful AMVs with that song are being blocked. And some INNOCENT, FREE-SPEAKING videos are blocked or even taken down JUST BECAUSE IT CONTAINS COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL THAT IS NOT BEING USED IN ANY MONETARY WAY.

Technically speaking, unless something like (the now dead) SOPA or ACTA were ever to pass (which won't, provided we take the time to fight back), we are not necessary "forbidden" from using copyrighted material. We're told we're not supposed to use it, but YouTube won't bust our asses immediately with the slightest notion that you're using any copyrighted material. But we are still hindered in our abilities to express ourselves and further made to look like evil little criminals, and it's sincerely unfair.

We need to make new copyright laws in FAVOUR of the public, not against. We need to make laws that acknowledge our need for self expression in any way and we can't let copyright owners remove them for the most asinine reasons. (And in some cases, there's the suspicion that some copyright owners merely don't like what's posted online and simply use copyright as an excuse to block or take down what we post.)

I don't understand why copyright owners need to get so worked up over something as simple as a nonprofit video featuring transformative and limited use of their material that aren't trying to negatively impact their market or their image. (And there are enough honest people who try to legally purchase the material used, so hey, free promotion). And quite frankly, they should not.

I'm done. If anyone wants to join me on the crusade against false copyright claims and obnoxious (and often downright evil) restrictions, just step forward.
Add a Comment:
MoPotter Featured By Owner Jan 17, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I agree with you 100%!! YouTube is pissing me off with all of this "I Acknowledge" crap and not letting innocent "Not-making-money-off-of-it" people use copyrighted material!! I know of course it's instigated by the copyrighted materials' owners themselves, but still. I wish they could do something to help it!!
P.S. I'm so scared to push the button too *_*
KikiMononoke Featured By Owner Jan 18, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
iceq2 Featured By Owner Dec 28, 2012
But what would happen if I , or you, do not , never, click on the "I acknowledge" magic button ??
KikiMononoke Featured By Owner Dec 28, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Well I haven't gotten into trouble for not clicking on the button and I'm too scared to do so anyway. Nobody really knows what the button's for. I guess it's there so that the copyright owner will ease off your back (as in, don't decide to take the vid down one day) but apparently some people who clicked the button could not file a dispute. I imagine that it's your way of saying "Yes, I ACKNOWLEDGE that it is not mine, but I'm not trying to be a pirate or anything like that" and the copyright owner will go "Oh, okay, you know what you're doing and you're not trying to be a thief, that's fine, you can keep the video now, but since you admitted you used our material you can't try to dispute our claim and get us off your back" or something, if you know what I mean. My advice? Just don't click the button. Ever. Not clicking probably won't help anything, but it won't really harm anything, either.

Here are some videos on the (updated) dispute processes if you're interested:

And if you want more info on Fair Use, check this site out:
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