It was recently reported in the Kollam Child abduction case that one of the accused had thought of making some quick bucks after her YouTube monetization got paused. So, is it true that the revenue from YouTube could stop coming all of a sudden? If so, what are the things to bear in mind to avoid such a situation?
In the movie Hridayam, Darshana - a YouTuber, says this to her friend Arun- the lead character, “donkey-work, low pay, and royal title – this is the status of revenue from YouTube’’. But a few years later, the same character is also seen earning big. But what happens when this cash flow stops abruptly one fine morning?
If you can remember, the police recently narrated the story of a young woman, an accused in the Oyur abduction case, undergoing a similar experience. But a few people are unconvinced. They kept popping up questions like how this cash flow, which had gone up to Rs 5 lakh per month, could stop all of a sudden and whether YouTube is a different world altogether.
Of course, not. To be precise, since it’s not an altogether different world, violation of its copyright stipulations and community guidelines will always be dealt with severe actions. For those aspiring to make YouTube a source of income, this episode reminds them of certain key aspects to be kept in mind. Let’s take a walk through all the nitty-gritty of creating YouTube content.
If you are using content – be it a video, audio, photo, or a videogame, prepared by another individual without consent, it will be regarded as a violation of copyright. If the presence of any such content is noticed on our YouTube channel, the creator can issue a copyright strike. YouTube, in turn, will give you an intimation in this regard and the strike will be imposed on your channel for 90 days. In case of no slip-ups from our side, we may move an appeal against the strike or else, approach the individual or institution that served the strike directly, admit to the offence, and request for lifting the strike. You may be required to take down the content only if the opposite party insists on deleting it. There is no need to delete the content just because you have received such a notice.
The risk, however, escalates if you receive two more strike notices within 90 days of the first strike notice. If you are unable to avoid at least one strike within the next seven days, you could even lose your YouTube channel for once and all. You will not be able to open yet another channel using the e-mail ID and the phone number given while creating the earlier channel.
If you are sure that no copyright infringement has taken place in your content, you can intimate the same to YouTube. Upon confirming that the strike notice served as a fake, YouTube will seek evidence from those issuing the notice and in case of a failure to furnish the same, the platform will initiate action against the complainant. If the content is in line with the‘ fair use policy’ of YouTube, you will be kept away from copyright violation disputes.
Myth and truth
The content creators, meanwhile, are also drawn into trouble by some copyright myths that prevail over YouTube videos. The reality, however, is entirely different. Even if you give credit to the copyright owner in the video, not all contents can be used and the issue is not going to settle though you classify the video as non-profit.
Also, never jump into a decision that “I too shall do the same as others have already done.” Any content, even if it lasts only a few seconds, can land you in trouble. The copyright issue applies to the content copied from mediums such as TV, theatre, and radio or even the photo being used on the video thumbnail.
If the video by another party is being used for the creation of content like video reaction or review, consent of the copyright owner should be obtained. In the case of music scores, the portion should either be avoided or muted. You may also replace the portion of music with another score.
Read the community guidelines carefully
The YouTube directly serves us the community guidelines. If you fail to follow the criteria set by the company in uploading a video, the first warning to be issued is about the community guidelines. It may remain there on the channel forever though it will not cause any trouble. But at the same time, the ‘community guideline strike’ poses trouble. As in the case of copyright violation, it too encompasses a 90-day timeframe and if you receive three more strikes in between, just forget about the channel. Do remember that the community guideline strike may come at any time; within just a few seconds of uploading a video to even a few years later. Keep in mind the following things to avoid such strikes:
- Never try raising the number of viewers by handing over money to a third party.
- Make sure that the content from some other channel is uploaded with the same name and description.
- Never do a video describing how to download the content from YouTube, movies, different software and apps that are not in Play Store, etc.
- Videos that use misleading content, pictures, or words to draw viewers will invite action from the platform.
- While creating videos on children, make sure that their privacy is honoured.
- Attempts to promote narcotics, arms, hate speech, suicide, and sexually explicit content will lead to the closure of the channel.
Ask questions, seek assistance
Go over each line on the copyright rules and community guidelines of YouTube a thousand times. There should be no cause for worry if you tread ahead carefully. There are also umpteen number of persons to help you in this matter. For instance, you may watch videos relating to all issues concerning YouTube on channels like youtube.com/@shijoabraham. You can also raise your doubts through a chat by clicking the link support.google.com/youtube/community.