Updates to YouTube copyright policy aim to help creators avoid claims from copyright holders

Updates to YouTube copyright policy aim to help creators avoid claims from copyright holders

YouTube has announced updates to its copyright policies that can stop copyright holders putting in claims for videos that contain their music.

The update will prevent copyright owners from claiming monetisation on someone else's video that features a short or unintentional preview of a song or piece of music.

YouTube considers a short segment of music "single-digit seconds", and unintentional music "instances where there is no interaction between the creator and the music".

These updates won't block all copyright claims. YouTube has clarified that the update won't stop manual claims and copyright owners can still block monetisation on a video or request that it be hidden.

However, the platform has also introduced new tools that'll allow creators to easily edit uploaded videos, so they can remove the music causing the dispute without having to take it down.

"Including someone else’s content without permission - regardless of how short the clip is - means your video can still be claimed and copyright owners will still be able to prevent monetization or block the video from being viewed", YouTube wrote in a blog post.

"However, going forward, our policies will forbid copyright owners from using our Manual Claiming tool to monetize creator videos with very short or unintentional uses of music."

YouTube also stated that this change only affects claims made manually, and not claims made by the platform's Content ID match system. The changes will take effect in mid-September. 


Danielle Partis is editor of and former editor of She was named Journalist of the Year at the MCV Women in Games Awards 2019, as well as in the MCV 30 under 30 2020. Prior to Steel Media, she wrote about music and games at Team Rock.