Uploading videos to YouTube and YouTube’s partner programmes

Anyone can upload video content to YouTube following YouTube’s terms of use. YouTube does not pay individual uploaders royalties for the use of videos, even if advertisements are displayed with the videos. However, Teosto members do receive royalties through Teosto for the use of their music on YouTube (provided that the music has been recognized), because Teosto has an agreement on music use with YouTube.

With YouTube’s partner programmes, one can commercialise their own video content, i.e. receive royalties directly from YouTube for the videos by utilising advertisements and generating revenue from the possible paid features of the service.

Information on uploading videos to YouTube and YouTube’s partner programs is included below.

Individual user:

An individual user can be any private person or company that uploads video content to YouTube. An individual user might upload videos occasionally or create a YouTube channel.

As far as the rights of authors represented by Teosto are concerned, if an individual user is a private person using YouTube for their own private purposes, the user does not need permission for (i) synchronising the music works, i.e. reproducing the music work by combining sound with moving visual content when producing a YouTube video, or for (ii) uploading a video to YouTube or communicating it to the public on YouTube. All other licences for YouTube use an individual user must obtain from the relevant rights holders.

As far as the rights of authors represented by Teosto are concerned, if an individual user is a private person or a company that uses YouTube for commercial purposes, permission is needed for the synchronisation of music works, i.e. reproducing the music work by combining sound with moving visual content when producing a YouTube video (further information: www.ncb.dk). An individual user does not need permission from Teosto represented rights holders to upload a video to YouTube or to communicate it to the public on YouTube. All other licences for YouTube use an individual user must obtain from the relevant rights holders.

An individual user will not receive royalties from YouTube for the use of their videos on YouTube. An individual user will not receive royalties from Teosto either (unless they are a Teosto member, i.e. a music author).

YouTube’s partner programmes:

YouTube Partner

Who is it for: An individual user who uploads video content to YouTube and who chooses to commercialise its uploaded content on YouTube. A Partner must own all rights to the content that it uploads to YouTube. A film production company might be a Partner, for example. Videos uploaded by a Partner may contain music or other sound.

A Partner receives revenue:

  • when advertisements are displayed with a Partner’s videos.
  • when a Partner’s video content is used on possible YouTube paid services.

If the videos uploaded by a Partner contain music that can be identified by Content ID and matched with a reference file uploaded by a Music Partner the music rights holders may receive compensation for the use of their music in these videos uploaded by Partners. In other cases the music possibly used in the videos uploaded by Partners cannot be identified. Should this be the case, Teosto is not able to identify music in these videos either, which means that Teosto will not distribute revenue from these videos to authors represented by Teosto.

YouTube Music Partner

Who is it for: A record company or aggregator that uploads large amounts of music content to YouTube (examples of aggregators: Playground Music, Phonofile, Tunecore, Orchard, Believe Digital)

A video uploaded by a Music Partner is usually a music video or recording from a concert. To become a Music Partner, a separate application must be filed with YouTube. It is not enough to just create a YouTube channel. Typically a Music Partner uploads music to YouTube professionally. A Music Partner gains access to YouTube’s Content Management System, where they can administer their rights related to music.

A Music Partner provides YouTube with the song’s author information when they upload music to YouTube. A Music Partner creates a reference file for the song they upload, which is a prerequisite for YouTube’s content identification system Content ID to be able to identify that song in videos uploaded by individual users or Partners. Further information on reference files on YouTube’s website can be found here: https://support.google.com/youtube/answer/107004?hl=en

A Music Partner receives royalties:

  • when advertisements are displayed with a Music Partner’s videos.
  • when a Music Partner’s music has been used in any video where advertisements are displayed and YouTube’s Content ID identifies the music.
  • when a Music Partner’s music is used on YouTube’s possible paid services.

Teosto is not a Music Partner but Teosto has a separate agreement with YouTube on the use of the rights represented by Teosto. YouTube receives author information from Music Partners, and based on that information, YouTube provides Teosto with a report on the use of music works on YouTube.