Lydia Sweatt is a writer, bookworm, and bass guitar enthusiast. When she goes outside, a bicycle goes with her.
How to Remove YouTube Copyright Claims From Your Videos [2021 Update]
YouTube copyright claims are discouraging but necessary. These alerts, which are extremely common, let you know when you’ve used someone else's content in your video. Before the consequences get serious, it’s good to know when you’ve overstepped your bounds as a creator.
The violations that trip up some creators are quite common. Content that includes video clips, images, or audio you haven’t produced yourself will likely spark a copyright claim. Fortunately, you can remove these alerts. All you have to do is substitute copyrighted content for original content you own.
The last thing you want to receive is a copyright strike, which means the copyright owner submitted a legal takedown request for the video. Collecting three strikes is serious. At that point, YouTube will terminate your channel and bar you from creating another one.
Copyright claims aren’t as devastating as strikes, but they do feel like a speed bump in the YouTube journey. That’s because...
- You can lose monetization for your video.
- YouTube may restrict viewing to certain countries.
- And more
Want to reduce the number of copyright claims on your channel? YouTube just gave creators the best gift ever. It’s a feature that warns you, before publishing a video, that a copyright match was found.
How to Check a YouTube Video for Copyright Claims
Uploading a YouTube video requires several steps. Before your content goes live, you'll give it a title, thumbnail, description, keywords, and other elements to help people find and watch the video.
Now there’s an extra step that happens automatically. YouTube will inspect your content to see if it contains copyrighted material. This happens when you reach the Checks section, as shown below.
This is a game-changer. YouTube’s copyright checker tells you how long the process will take, and it reports copyright matches before you hit publish. At that point, you can choose the best course of action. That may be disputing the claim or taking steps to remove it.
How to Review a YouTube Copyright Claim
On the same upload page, you can view the impact a copyright claim has on your channel. Click See Details for more information.
Here's what you may see after expanding the details:
In this example, YouTube decided to:
- Restrict people from viewing the video in certain countries
- Make the video ineligible for monetization
In this case, the copyright holder can monetize the video for their financial gain. Ads may appear on the video, but the revenue goes to the copyright holder – not us. That's the price of using someone else's content. Still, it’s better than receiving copyright strikes and nearly losing a channel that took years to grow.
Removing or Disputing a YouTube Copyright Claim
If you decide to move forward and upload the video, you can remove or dispute its copyright claim.
To do that:
- Make sure you’re at the Checks section of the upload process. Click Select Action under the actions header of the page.
- Two questions will appear: “Remove claimed content?” or “Do you have rights to this content?” Beneath the first question, you’ll see options for fixing the copyright claim. If your video contains copyrighted music, for example, you can replace the song or Mute it.
- If you own the rights to the content, navigate to “Do you have rights to this content?” and click Dispute.
Need extra guidance? Watch the video below for detailed steps:
You have some flexibility with copyrighted music, but copyrighted video footage has to be removed. Simply delete that part of your video and re-upload the new version from scratch.
Ready to Publish Your Video? Here’s Why You Should Wait.
Imagine this. You’ve brainstormed a video idea, done some keyword research, and spent hours filming. You’ve edited everything for maximum clarity. Viewers have been asking for the video, so you know it's going to do well. That makes you excited – elated, even – to upload the video and start tracking views.
On the upload page, you add everything the video needs – a title, thumbnail, description, and keywords – to reach full optimization. You even pass the copyright check without a hitch. Your next instinct is to publish the video because well, why not?
Here’s why you shouldn’t.
Processing a YouTube Video Takes Time
We know what you may be thinking. Didn’t YouTube “finish” processing the video within minutes? That’s what YouTube reports, but it's not the full story. Things are happening in the background, which means you should wait two hours before publishing a video. Set the privacy setting to unlisted so YouTube has time to report accurate information about your video.
Assuming you haven’t already, you can save most of your optimizing for this waiting period. You can:
- Optimize your video’s title and thumbnail.
- Add interactive cards and end screens.
- Add a description and keywords.
And on YouTube’s end, there will be extra time to:
- Continue checking the video for copyright claims.
- Identify things that violate advertising guidelines (so you can make money).
- Process your video so it plays at the highest quality.
Keeping your channel in good standing is rule number one for successful creators. In addition to avoiding copyright claims, never make these eight legal mistakes on YouTube.