YouTube’s ContentID was a huge step forward towards online video being copyright-compliant, but the system had some quirks. For instance, official NASA recordings of the Mars landing last month were removed due to a complaint from a news network. Michelle Obama made a speech at the DNC that was flagged, even though YouTube was the official streaming partner of the Democratic National Convention. That’s not even mentioning the countless smaller media creators who have had legitimate videos flagged. Under current ContentID policy there is little to no recourse. That’s about to change, because Google-owned YouTube announced that they were tweaking the system to cut down on the number of false positives and system-wide abuse. Most importantly, under the new rules, if an uploader challenges a match, the person or company that flagged the original video much file an official government takedown notice under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act–which is a real process, and would expose scammers to legal liability.


In addition to the policy shift, YouTube also says that it’s improved the matching algorithms, which could be an even bigger improvement than the appeals process. And if anybody knows how to optimize an algorithm, it’s Google.

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