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YouTube pulls anti-YouTube video from YouTube

By | Published on Wednesday 1 November 2017

YouTube

The Content Creators Coalition has accused YouTube of blocking the video it published last week that criticises the Google site for not paying fair royalties to artists. The lobbying group says that YouTube pulled its video within 48 hours of it going live “due to a violation of terms and conditions”. It was subsequently reinstated.

As previously reported, last week C3 – which has been particularly vocal in the US about the need to reform the copyright safe harbour that benefits sites like YouTube – put out two videos criticising the Google video operation for the way it treats music makers.

One video focused on the disparity between the royalties paid by YouTube and those paid by audio streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music – ie the so called ‘value gap’. The other considered how the safe harbour requires copyright owners to monitor user-upload websites like YouTube and then request that infringing content be removed. Even though it’s estimated that about 300 hours of video is uploaded to YouTube every single minute.

C3 said that it planned to post the two videos in various places online as part of its bid to win public support for safe harbour reform. And that included posting the videos to YouTube itself, thus using YouTube to diss YouTube. Fun times.

It’s the first video, called ‘Pennies vs Dollars’, that was blocked. While it’s not clear what terms and conditions the video violated, you can see why YouTube might not want to help with the distribution of a big fat YouTube diss. Though being seen to censor your critics in the artist community isn’t an especially good look either, which is possibly why the Google site subsequently reinstated the C3 video.

According to the New York Post, C3 told YouTube after its video was blocked: “After two days of widespread press coverage of our artist-driven campaign to pressure Google into treating artists more fairly you suspended and are now censoring our account”.

Perhaps aware of the bad PR censoring the C3 artists might create, YouTube reinstated the video within a few hours. The campaign group received a message stating: “Our specialist team has re-reviewed your account and found no violations of our advertising policies. Your ads are now eligible to run”.

Some critics of YouTube in the music community have now contrasted YouTube’s proactive removal of the C3 video, due to supposed term violations, with its widely reported slow removal of extremist and violent content. As previously reported, some brands pulled advertising from YouTube earlier this year over concern their ads might appear alongside such content. YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki subsequently told ad industry execs “we will do better” in keeping that kind of content off the platform.



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