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YouTube DMCA 101: How to Protect Your Digital Content on YouTube

Are a digital content creator who spends countless hours creating awesome looking, engaging, and insightful videos? Or perhaps you’re a musician who stays up nights trying to perfect that one tune? Isn’t it disheartening to find that the content you worked so hard to create is being used by other YouTubers without your permission? Worse still, they might be plagiarising your work and even making money from it.

If you’ve fallen prey to the monstrous demon of YouTube copyright infringement, there’s no need to break a sweat. The good news is that you can send a YouTube DMCA notice to request the removal of the infringing or plagiarized content. On the other hand, if your YouTube channel becomes the victim of a false copyright claim, you can issue a Youtube DMCA counter-notice.

But if you’re new to the world of online content creation, navigating the world of YouTube DMCA can be daunting. In this blog, we’ll take a deep dive into the process of filing a YouTube DMCA notice. We’ll also take a look at the most common copyright-related issues you’ll likely encounter while publishing videos on YouTube. Without further ado, let’s get started.

How Does YouTube DMCA Work?

YouTube has made it possible for any individual to file a copyright claim without hiring a lawyer. Here’s how the YouTube DMCA process typically works:

  • You submit a copyright claim by filling out a complaint form on YouTube.
  • YouTube removes the video containing the infringing material.
  • YouTube notifies the owner of the corresponding channel and adds a copyright strike to their account.
  • The channel owner can choose to accept the takedown or issue a counter-notice.
  • If the channel owner files a counter-notice, YouTube will notify you.
  • You have the choice to respond with a lawsuit. If you don’t respond to the counter-notice, YouTube will reinstate the video after 10 to 14 days.

Image via EFF

Depending on the final outcome, YouTube can also choose to reinstate the video but demonetize it. Alternatively, the platform can direct ad revenue from the video to your account.

How to File a DMCA Notice on YouTube?

Submitting a DMCA takedown notice on YouTube isn’t rocket science. The streaming platform provides you with a standard copyright complaint form. You just have to ensure that you provide accurate details while filling the form. Here’s what the form looks like:

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Image via YouTube

Apart from the URL of the infringing content, you need to select the type of copyright violations from the drop-down list. Moreover, you need to provide some information about yourself before you can submit the copyright claim.

Image via YouTube

You can’t submit a DMCA notice on YouTube unless you’re the copyright owner or have been authorized by the owner. Also, you need to verify whether the use of your copyrighted work is covered under fair use.

Can You File a DMCA Claim on Stolen YouTube Videos?

If your copyrighted videos have been plagiarized or used without your permission on YouTube, you can easily file a DMCA notice. All you have to do is fill the copyright complaint form and submit it. However, if you’re not the rightsholder of the original video, YouTube won’t accept your copyright claim.

How Do YouTubers Fight Fake DMCA Notices?

YouTube’s easy DMCA takedown submission process has made it possible for anyone to file false copyright claims. If you become the victim of such a fake DMCA claim, don’t panic.

You just have to issue a counter-notice that includes the following details:

  • Your personal details such as name, address, phone number, etc.
  • Identification of the video that has been removed
  • A statement of good faith belief stating that the video was removed by mistake or misidentification
  • Consent to the jurisdiction of your local federal court
  • Your electronic signature

If the rightsholder doesn’t respond with a lawsuit within two weeks after receiving the counter-notice, YouTube will restore your video. This will also help you get rid of the associated copyright strike on your YouTube channel.

What Happens if YouTube Doesn’t Act on DMCA Notices?

When it comes to copyright infringement, DMCA gives a safe harbor to service providers like YouTube. However, if you file a DMCA notice, YouTube is legally obligated to remove the infringing content.

In the worst-case scenario, if YouTube fails to take any action, you can directly send a DMCA takedown notice to the owner/creator of infringing content. You could also consider taking things to the court.

Has a YouTube DMCA Case Ever Gone to Court?

Most recently, YouTube settled a lawsuit against serial copyright troll Christopher Brady in October 2019. While Brady agreed to pay $25,000 in damages, he’s also been banned from submitting any copyright claims on YouTube.

Have you ever filed a YoutTube DMCA takedown notice? Share your experience in the comments section below.

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Everything You Need to Know About Twitch DMCA in 2020

If you’re a digital content creator or gamer, you’re likely familiar with Twitch. The popular live streaming platform has facilitated the creation of a thriving community of gamers, streamers, broadcasters, and other creators.

On the other hand, it has also resulted in the rise of unintentional copyright violations and lengthy takedown notifications. If you’re new to the world of online gaming and live streaming, it’s time for you to get a hang of Twitch DMCA. 

DMCA gives some sort of a safe harbor to streaming platforms like Twitch. Nevertheless, if a content creator, musician, designer, etc. submits a DMCA takedown notification, Twitch is obligated to remove the infringing content. Your Twitch VODs and clips could be pulled down due to unauthorized use of copyrighted music, video clips, artwork, and animation.

The sad part is that sometimes you may not always know when and how you’re violating someone else’s IP rights while streaming on Twitch. So, how can you protect your content and channel from the perils of Twitch DMCA? In this blog, we’ll understand how Twitch DMCA works and what you can do if you receive a takedown notification. Let’s get started.

Who Can File a Twitch DMCA Notification?

A Twitch DMCA takedown notification is typically filed by a musician, graphic designer, video producer, or any other creative professional. Music record labels and production companies can also issue such notifications. Typically, when someone detects unauthorized use of their copyrighted work on your Twitch channel, they can request deletion of the infringing content.

How Does Twitch DMCA Work?

Twitch has outlined clear DMCA guidelines for issuing takedown notifications and counter-notifications. Here’s how the process works:

  • The rightsholder sends a written takedown notification to Twitch’s Designated Copyright Agent.
  • Twitch removes the infringing content or restricts access to the VODs/clips.
  • Twitch sends an email to the channel owner. The email includes the details of the copyright claim as well as information about the rightsholder.
  • When you receive this email from Twitch, you can contact the rightsholder requesting them to retract the takedown notice.
  • If you believe your content has been removed by mistake or misidentification, you can send a counter-notification to Twitch’s Designated Copyright Agent. 
  • Twitch forwards the counter-notification to the rightsholder. Now, it’s up to the rightsholder to retract their complaint or respond with a lawsuit.

How Fast Do Moderators Handle DMCA Issues on Twitch?

Twitch moderators are quite active and tend to proactively respond to DMCA notifications and counter-notifications. It is, however, important to select a reliable and trustworthy moderation team for your channel.

Can Your Twitch Channel Get Shut Down From DMCA?

Twitch has a stringent repeat infringer policy similar to that of YouTube. Every time Twitch receives a copyright claim against your content, your channel gets a copyright strike. If you get three strikes, Twitch will terminate access to your channel.

Also, the platform can use its discretion to terminate channels that violate the IP rights of other creators, even in the absence of repeat infringement.

What to Do If You Receive a Twitch DMCA Notice?

As mentioned earlier, you can get in touch with the claimant and request them to retract the copyright claim. Alternatively, if you believe you own the rights to the disputed content or if it’s covered under fair use, you can send a written counter-notification to Twitch’s Designated Copyright Agent.

You can also get in touch with the claimant, obtain the necessary license/rights to the infringing material, and send a counter-notification to Twitch.

How Do I Know Which Songs Won’t Attract DMCA Notices on Twitch?

Simply put, if you don’t know whether you own the rights to a particular music track, it’s likely that you don’t have the rights. Twitch recommends that you avoid using recorded music in your live streams. Make sure you read the game developer’s end user license agreement to find their policies about live streaming.

While muting the audio altogether is an option, it can affect the quality of your stream. As an alternative, you can use Soundtrack by Twitch to include licensed music in your stream. You can also use license-clear music libraries such as Monstercat Gold, Soundstripe, Epidemic Sound, etc. 

This has become particularly important after Twitch received an influx of DMCA notifications from music record labels in May 2020.

How to Contact Twitch Over a DMCA Notice?

Twitch advises that you send all DMCA takedown notifications to their Designated Copyright Agent. Here are the contact details:

  • Email address: dmca@twitch.tv
  • Mailing address: Copyright Agent, 350 Bush Street, 2nd Floor, San Francisco, CA 94104
  • Phone number: (415) 262-9766\

Want us to Help you with Twitch DMCA Takedown? Get in Touch With us today.