fbpx
Categories
SOCIAL MEDIA TIPS & TRICKS YOUTUBE

Can YouTube Audio Library Be Used On Instagram?

YouTube goes to great lengths to ensure it doesn’t run afoul of any copyright laws, and those lengths include providing an entire audio library for YouTubers to use in their content so they don’t need to use copyrighted music.

But how generous is the terms and licensing on YouTube’s music library? For instance, can YouTube audio library be used on Instagram? What about Facebook? TikTok? Or even just your own independent movie project?

We’re going to dive into this topic in more detail, of course, but the short answer is yes, you can use YouTube Audio Library files on Instagram, as well as other platforms. But, as always, there is a little more to know before you go grabbing all the music.

What is YouTube Audio Library?

YouTube Audio Library is a collection of audio spanning several genres and types of music. It is accessible to YouTube users only, though the licenses on the files are creative commons, meaning they are free to use, you just need access to YouTube Studio to get to them. And, of course, there is no cost to open a YouTube account and get access to YouTube Studio.

In the past, YouTube Audio Library was a separate part of YouTube that could be accessed publicly, but it was moved into YouTube Studio relatively recently.

The audio available in YouTube Audio Library can be filtered by several aspects, including length, genre, mood, and whether attribution is required. You can play the audio directly from YouTube Audio Library, so you don’t need to download it to decide if it is right for the content you are making.

Can YouTube Audio Library Be Used On Instagram? 1

YouTube Audio Library Licensing

Now we get to the meat of this topic—the licensing of the audio you can find in this library. As of right now, all of the audio is licensed under Creative Commons, meaning it is free to use for any personal or commercial endeavour. There are two flavours of Creative Commons license available; non-attribution and attribution required.

These are pretty self-explanatory, but the attribution on attribution required audio is the only requirement—you can still use the audio however you see fit. Of course, you are free to give attribution on the non-attribution audio as well, but you are not required to.

It should be noted that YouTube can make changes to their services at any time, so it is always worth making sure that the audio you are choosing is clearly stated to be Creative Commons licensed. It is well within the realm of possibility that YouTube could start adding audio that is specifically licensed for use on YouTube only. Should this happen, it’s worth taking an extra second to verify the audio you’re using is freely licensed to avoid getting in legal trouble with YouTube.

Using YouTube Audio Library on Instagram

Being legally allowed to use the audio in YouTube’s Audio Library on Instagram is one thing, but how do you actually go about it? Well, in 2021, it’s probably not as easy as you might have expected.

Instagram does have a feature for adding music to videos… if those videos are Stories (Instagram’s version of Snaps or YouTube Shorts). The music sticker allows you to simply drop the sticker onto your story, pick the song and section, and away you go. Unfortunately, you can only choose from the selection of music Instagram provides.

The music available here is all licensed copyrighted music of the sort you would expect to hear on the radio, not Creative Commons audio from YouTube Audio Library. If you want to overlay Adele’s Someone Like You over your short video, that’s fine, but if you found something on YouTube Audio Library that you really like and want to use, you’re going to have to bring in some video editing software.

What that video editing software is will largely depend on what you’re comfortable with, but given that this post is primarily about using YouTube Audio Library with Instagram, it’s safe to say you’ll be looking for a mobile video editing app, rather than a fully-featured production suite for PC or Mac.

There are several free options available, of course, but just about all of them have restrictions that can only be removed if the app is paid for (or subscribed to in some cases). Some of the more common restrictions include having a watermark in the video and restrictions on how long the video can be. The good news is that these apps are rarely expensive to purchase the premium version of.

Some popular mobile video editing apps are;

  • KineMaster
  • Magisto
  • VivaVideo
  • Quik
  • FilmoraGo

Once you have a video editing app that you are comfortable with, simply head over to YouTube Studio and the YouTube Audio Library, find the audio you want to use, download it, and pull it into your editing app. From there you will have to refer to the instructions for using your specific app, but it should be relatively straightforward. After all, these are lightweight apps intended for making quick edits, not professional editing suites intended for making cinematic masterpieces in!

Final Thoughts

This post focuses on Instagram because Instagram is probably the most common platform for this kind of activity (after YouTube itself, of course), but the same rules apply elsewhere. The audio in YouTube’s Audio Library is freely available to use as you please (assuming the chosen audio is licensed under Creative Commons, as mentioned above), and that means you can use it anywhere.

Incidentally, if you are interested in learning more about Creative Commons, follow this link to their website, which has a wealth of information and news about it. It never hurts to understand more about the licenses you are relying on when creating content.

If you benefit from the music found on YouTube Audio Library, it may be good karma (if you believe in that) to throw a little attribution the way of the audio’s creator even if it wasn’t a requirement in the first place.

Then again, maybe you’re not looking to get freely licensed music out of YouTube, maybe you want to get copyrighted music into YouTube…

Top 5 Tools To Get You Started on YouTube

Very quickly before you go here are 5 amazing tools I have used every day to grow my YouTube channel from 0 to 30K subscribers in the last 12 months that I could not live without.

1. VidIQ helps boost my views and get found in search

I almost exclusively switched to VidIQ from a rival in 2020.

Within 12 months I tripled the size of my channel and very quickly learnt the power of thumbnails, click through rate and proper search optimization. Best of all, they are FREE!

2. Adobe Creative Suite helps me craft amazing looking thumbnails and eye-catching videos

I have been making youtube videos on and off since 2013.

When I first started I threw things together in Window Movie Maker, cringed at how it looked but thought “that’s the best I can do so it’ll have to do”.

Big mistake!

I soon realized the move time you put into your editing and the more engaging your thumbnails are the more views you will get and the more people will trust you enough to subscribe.

That is why I took the plunge and invested in my editing and design process with Adobe Creative Suite. They offer a WIDE range of tools to help make amazing videos, simple to use tools for overlays, graphics, one click tools to fix your audio and the very powerful Photoshop graphics program to make eye-catching thumbnails.

Best of all you can get a free trial for 30 days on their website, a discount if you are a student and if you are a regular human being it starts from as little as £9 per month if you want to commit to a plan.

3. Rev.com helps people read my videos

You can’t always listen to a video.

Maybe you’re on a bus, a train or sat in a living room with a 5 year old singing baby shark on loop… for HOURS. Or, you are trying to make as little noise as possible while your new born is FINALLY sleeping.

This is where Rev can help you or your audience consume your content on the go, in silence or in a language not native to the video.

Rev.com can help you translate your videos, transcribe your videos, add subtitles and even convert those subtitles into other languages – all from just $1.50 per minute.

A GREAT way to find an audience and keep them hooked no matter where they are watching your content.

4. Learn new skills for FREE with Skillshare

I SUCK reading books to learn, but I LOVE online video courses.

Every month I learn something new. Editing, writing, video skills, how to cook, how to run a business – even how to meditate to calm a busy mind.

I find all of these for FREE with Skillshare – Sign up, pick all the courses you want and cancel anytime you need.

5. Shutterstock helps me add amazing video b-roll cutaways

I mainly make tutorials and talking head videos.

And in this modern world this can be a little boring if you don’t see something funky every once in a while.

I try with overlays, jump cuts and being funny but my secret weapon is b-roll overlay content.

I can talk about skydiving, food, money, kids, cats – ANYTHING I WANT – with a quick search on the Shutterstock website I can find a great looking clip to overlay on my videos, keeping them entertained and watching for longer.

They have a wide library of videos, graphics, images and even a video maker tool and it wont break the bank with plans starting from as little as £8.25 ($9) per month.

Categories
SOCIAL MEDIA YOUTUBE

Can YouTube Play Dolby Atmos?

The average Internet connection speed is increasing, and with Internet coverage becoming more and more ubiquitous, it is becoming increasingly common for consumers of entertainment to get their fix online through the likes of YouTube. But what about those consumers who want the best, most immersive experience possible? 4K streaming is already available through many streaming platforms, but what about sound?

What is Dolby Atmos? – Dolby Atmos has become the standard for immersive surround sound, having moved from cinema screens to homes and become affordable enough for the average audiophile to afford.

Of course, the fact that you have a Dolby Atmos system in your home doesn’t mean anything if you don’t have any Dolby Atmos ready content to play through it.

So, does YouTube support this immersive audio platform? No, unfortunately, YouTube does not support Dolby Atmos. Content uploaded to YouTube is compressed for bandwidth efficiency reasons, and all audio is reduced to standard stereo 2.0. The exception to this rule is YouTube TV, however.

What Is Dolby Atmos?

If you’ve been reading this so far and asking yourself “what is Dolby Atmos?”, don’t worry, we’ve got your back.

Dolby Atmos is a proprietary audio format created by Dolby to provide an immersive 360 degrees sound environment that is akin to what you’d experience in a cinema. The platform works with any number of compatible speakers (though a minimum of four is recommended) and is calibrated to the specific layout of the room and the speakers to provide the best fidelity and most immersive experience possible.

Of course, this experience is only available using content that is made to work with Dolby Atmos. The amount of available content is growing by the day, but it is far from ubiquitous.

Can YouTube Play Dolby Atmos

As of the time of writing this post, regular YouTube—that is the freely available YouTube where anyone can upload content—does not support Dolby Atmos nor has any plan been announced to support Atmos in the near future.

This is likely due to two main factors (though we’re speculating, of course). Firstly, the user-generated content aspect of YouTube’s business is one of the hardest to make profitable. You only have to look at the fact that the overwhelming majority of YouTubers have less than a thousand subscribers to see that the overwhelming majority of the content uploaded to YouTube is not profitable. If there are only a dozen people watching the content, it is not going to generate enough ad revenue to pay for the cost of storing and delivering it.

Adding the additional information required by Dolby Atmos means more data storage and increased bandwidth when someone streams the content, which means more expense for YouTube if that content isn’t making enough to pay for itself.

The other reason is the lack of demand for it from creators. Of all the users uploading videos to YouTube, only a minuscule fraction might be in a position to take advantage of support for Dolby Atmos. Leaving aside any technical challenges in creating Atmos content, how many YouTubers do you watch that need it? PewDiePie certainly wouldn’t gain anything from having Dolby Atmos audio.

Can YouTube Play Dolby Atmos?

Can YouTube Music Play Dolby Atmos?

Like the main YouTube platform, YouTube’s music streaming service does not support Dolby Atmos. Again, there is no word at the time of writing this post that YouTube plans to implement Atmos, but again, we find it unlikely that YouTube would go to the trouble.

While much of the music available on YouTube Music is made by professionals with music label backing, the vast majority of that music is not made to take advantage of Dolby Atmos. And, since there is an enormous catalogue of music available, it may be some time before Dolby Atmos-ready music makes up any kind of significant portion of the music on that platform. If ever.

Can YouTube TV Play Dolby Atmos?

Again, no Dolby Atmos here. YouTube TV brings us a little closer, however, as a new “4K Plus” tier providing 4K content and Dolby 5.1 surround sound was announced earlier this year. This isn’t quite Dolby Atmos, but it does offer a more immersive surround sound experience for those who have a compatible sound system.

Again, there is likely a return on investment factor at play here. Adding that additional Dolby Atmos information makes delivering the content more expensive for YouTube, and while YouTube TV is probably the most likely to be in a position to take advantage of Atmos, the majority of its content will still be Dolby 5.1 at best, or just plain stereo 2.0.

Will YouTube Add Dolby Atmos?

In the fullness of time, it is entirely possible that YouTube will start adding Dolby Atmos to its offerings—assuming Atmos isn’t replaced by a better alternative before that happens.

Granted, the vast majority of the content is still likely to not be made for Dolby Atmos, but as bandwidth gets cheaper and more available, it will represent less of a cost to YouTube to deliver it.

Final Thoughts

So, presently YouTube does not offer Dolby Atmos on any of its various services, and there doesn’t seem to be any intention to add those services in the near future. YouTube TV comes closest, offering Dolby 5.1 sound for 4K Plus users, but that is a service only available in the United States.

The reality is that the economics and a lack of realistic demand for Atmos make it a questionable business decision at this stage for YouTube, so there won’t be a real impetus to add the feature. This may be unwanted news for those precious few YouTube creators out there who can and want to make use of Dolby Atmos, but for the overwhelming majority of us, it doesn’t make much difference.

On the other hand, if you are reading this, not as a creator, but as a consumer with a shiny new Dolby Atmos system and you want some content to play through it, Netflix and Amazon Prime both support Dolby Atmos!

Top 5 Tools To Get You Started on YouTube

Very quickly before you go here are 5 amazing tools I have used every day to grow my YouTube channel from 0 to 30K subscribers in the last 12 months that I could not live without.

1. VidIQ helps boost my views and get found in search

I almost exclusively switched to VidIQ from a rival in 2020.

Within 12 months I tripled the size of my channel and very quickly learnt the power of thumbnails, click through rate and proper search optimization. Best of all, they are FREE!

2. Adobe Creative Suite helps me craft amazing looking thumbnails and eye-catching videos

I have been making youtube videos on and off since 2013.

When I first started I threw things together in Window Movie Maker, cringed at how it looked but thought “that’s the best I can do so it’ll have to do”.

Big mistake!

I soon realized the move time you put into your editing and the more engaging your thumbnails are the more views you will get and the more people will trust you enough to subscribe.

That is why I took the plunge and invested in my editing and design process with Adobe Creative Suite. They offer a WIDE range of tools to help make amazing videos, simple to use tools for overlays, graphics, one click tools to fix your audio and the very powerful Photoshop graphics program to make eye-catching thumbnails.

Best of all you can get a free trial for 30 days on their website, a discount if you are a student and if you are a regular human being it starts from as little as £9 per month if you want to commit to a plan.

3. Rev.com helps people read my videos

You can’t always listen to a video.

Maybe you’re on a bus, a train or sat in a living room with a 5 year old singing baby shark on loop… for HOURS. Or, you are trying to make as little noise as possible while your new born is FINALLY sleeping.

This is where Rev can help you or your audience consume your content on the go, in silence or in a language not native to the video.

Rev.com can help you translate your videos, transcribe your videos, add subtitles and even convert those subtitles into other languages – all from just $1.50 per minute.

A GREAT way to find an audience and keep them hooked no matter where they are watching your content.

4. Learn new skills for FREE with Skillshare

I SUCK reading books to learn, but I LOVE online video courses.

Every month I learn something new. Editing, writing, video skills, how to cook, how to run a business – even how to meditate to calm a busy mind.

I find all of these for FREE with Skillshare – Sign up, pick all the courses you want and cancel anytime you need.

5. Shutterstock helps me add amazing video b-roll cutaways

I mainly make tutorials and talking head videos.

And in this modern world this can be a little boring if you don’t see something funky every once in a while.

I try with overlays, jump cuts and being funny but my secret weapon is b-roll overlay content.

I can talk about skydiving, food, money, kids, cats – ANYTHING I WANT – with a quick search on the Shutterstock website I can find a great looking clip to overlay on my videos, keeping them entertained and watching for longer.

They have a wide library of videos, graphics, images and even a video maker tool and it wont break the bank with plans starting from as little as £8.25 ($9) per month.

Categories
TIPS & TRICKS YOUTUBE

Can You Use Copyrighted Music on YouTube if You Don’t Monetize?

Using copyrighted material on YouTube has always been a contentious area. Whether it’s big faceless corporations stifling small creators who are clearly within the realm of fair use, or YouTubers blatantly stealing other YouTubers content, there are plenty of examples of things turning sour.

The question of whether you can use copyrighted music in your videos is a common one for inexperienced YouTubers, and, generally speaking, the answer is no. But what about if you aren’t monetising those videos? In this video, we’re going to address that very question.

The Blunt Reality

There is some nuance to be discussed with this type of situation—and we will get to that nuance—but it should be noted first that there is an absolute to deal here.

From a purely legal and technical point of view, there is no situation where you can use copyrighted music in your videos without permission, with the complicated exception of fair use. Copyright protection is not limited to situations where the copyright infringer is making money from their use of the copyrighted media.

Loosely put, any time someone infringes on copyrighted music, there is potential for someone who might have bought a song or listened to it on a streaming service who will no longer do so because they heard it on your YouTube video. So, while you, the copyright infringer, might not be making any money from your use of the media, you could theoretically still be costing the copyright holder’s money.

So, the golden rule here is that any time you want to use copyrighted music, assume you need permission from the copyright holder. No exceptions. If you’d like a bit more information on fair use, here’s a handy video;

The Nuance

Okay, so that was the blunt reality of using copyrighted music. Now for the more nuanced YouTube reality.

Firstly, you are extremely unlikely to face any legal repercussions for copyright infringement on YouTube. That being said, there is nothing to stop a copyright holder from pursuing in the courts for damages. If you infringe copyright, you are taking this risk.

In practice, copyright holders are content to let YouTube’s built-in copyright protection methods do the heavy lifting. So, while you might not get sued by Warner Bros. for using music they hold the copyright for, you will still face repercussions from YouTube.

Strikes and Suspensions

In the olden days of YouTube, a successful copyright claim against your videos would see you get a copyright strike, with three strikes leading to a suspension/banning. The strikes system is still in place, but it is less relevant than it used to be, as we’ll talk about in a moment.

Banning is the most severe repercussion YouTube will bring down upon you. If you are a successful YouTuber who is perhaps making quite a bit of money on the platform, this is a pretty severe repercussion. If you are a small YouTuber—perhaps one who hasn’t even met the threshold for the YouTube Partner Programme—then the prospect of being banned might not seem so severe, but just bear in mind that the ban would be permanent, and YouTube would enforce it on any future accounts they identify as being you.

Can You Use Copyrighted Music on YouTube if You Don't Monetize? 1

Content ID and Copyright Claims

The reason the strikes system is less relevant these days is that YouTube have implemented a system whereby copyright holders can “claim” copyrighted content, as well the Content ID system for automatically detecting claimed content.

In cases where copyrighted music is detected—and not successfully counter-claimed—the copyright holder has a few options.

  • Mute the audio of your video
  • Block your video
  • Monetize your video
  • Track your video

The first two are pretty self-explanatory. Monetising your video is exactly what it sounds like, with the twist being that the money generated goes to the copyright holder, not you. Whether or not you have opted to monetize that video—or whether you are even eligible to monetize it—is not a factor here. The final option allows the copyright holder to track the viewing statistics of your video, giving them all the data about how many people have watched, where they are from, and everything else you can see about your viewing demographics.

If your content gets such a copyright claim—and it is legitimate—you have a few options. You can swap out the music, dispute the claim, or go with the flow and accept the copyright holder’s chosen action.

In this sense, you could use copyrighted music in your videos if you are not concerned about receiving revenue from them. However, it is worth noting that there is no way of knowing what the copyright holder’s preferred action is, other than finding out who the copyright holder is and looking it up.

For music that is flagged in the Content ID system, you can test the situation by uploading a private video with the music you intend to use. It doesn’t need to be a real video, just a blank screen with the music playing will do. You will be notified as soon as the video has finished processing, and your options will be presented to you.

Final Thoughts

Copyright issues on YouTube are far from straightforward. That is, unless you take the “you can’t use copyrighted music without permission, end of discussion” line of thinking, but, for the most part, you should be safe to experiment without fear of any serious consequences.

Content ID claims do not negatively affect your channel, and YouTube gives you the opportunity to resolve the copyright issues before the video ever goes public, reducing the possibility of real legal consequences significantly.

So, can you use copyrighted music on YouTube if you don’t monetize? The answer is yes… in some cases. It’s also the case that the “don’t monetize” part is non-optional, since you won’t be able to monetize your videos if they have copyrighted music in them.

But whether or not you tried to monetize the video is entirely irrelevant to whether you are allowed to use the copyrighted music.

Top 5 Tools To Get You Started on YouTube

Very quickly before you go here are 5 amazing tools I have used every day to grow my YouTube channel from 0 to 30K subscribers in the last 12 months that I could not live without.

1. VidIQ helps boost my views and get found in search

I almost exclusively switched to VidIQ from a rival in 2020.

Within 12 months I tripled the size of my channel and very quickly learnt the power of thumbnails, click through rate and proper search optimization. Best of all, they are FREE!

2. Adobe Creative Suite helps me craft amazing looking thumbnails and eye-catching videos

I have been making youtube videos on and off since 2013.

When I first started I threw things together in Window Movie Maker, cringed at how it looked but thought “that’s the best I can do so it’ll have to do”.

Big mistake!

I soon realized the move time you put into your editing and the more engaging your thumbnails are the more views you will get and the more people will trust you enough to subscribe.

That is why I took the plunge and invested in my editing and design process with Adobe Creative Suite. They offer a WIDE range of tools to help make amazing videos, simple to use tools for overlays, graphics, one click tools to fix your audio and the very powerful Photoshop graphics program to make eye-catching thumbnails.

Best of all you can get a free trial for 30 days on their website, a discount if you are a student and if you are a regular human being it starts from as little as £9 per month if you want to commit to a plan.

3. Rev.com helps people read my videos

You can’t always listen to a video.

Maybe you’re on a bus, a train or sat in a living room with a 5 year old singing baby shark on loop… for HOURS. Or, you are trying to make as little noise as possible while your new born is FINALLY sleeping.

This is where Rev can help you or your audience consume your content on the go, in silence or in a language not native to the video.

Rev.com can help you translate your videos, transcribe your videos, add subtitles and even convert those subtitles into other languages – all from just $1.50 per minute.

A GREAT way to find an audience and keep them hooked no matter where they are watching your content.

4. Learn new skills for FREE with Skillshare

I SUCK reading books to learn, but I LOVE online video courses.

Every month I learn something new. Editing, writing, video skills, how to cook, how to run a business – even how to meditate to calm a busy mind.

I find all of these for FREE with Skillshare – Sign up, pick all the courses you want and cancel anytime you need.

5. Shutterstock helps me add amazing video b-roll cutaways

I mainly make tutorials and talking head videos.

And in this modern world this can be a little boring if you don’t see something funky every once in a while.

I try with overlays, jump cuts and being funny but my secret weapon is b-roll overlay content.

I can talk about skydiving, food, money, kids, cats – ANYTHING I WANT – with a quick search on the Shutterstock website I can find a great looking clip to overlay on my videos, keeping them entertained and watching for longer.

They have a wide library of videos, graphics, images and even a video maker tool and it wont break the bank with plans starting from as little as £8.25 ($9) per month.

Categories
DEEP DIVE ARTICLE HOW TO MAKE MONEY ONLINE TIPS & TRICKS YOUTUBE

Make Money Doing Covers on YouTube

Covering popular songs is an excellent way for musicians to gain exposure through YouTube.

The popularity of the song can draw people into your channel where you can show off your talent, skill, and, hopefully, your unique style.

Unfortunately, copyright is a serious roadblock to monetising this kind of content.

The music industry has been and still is one of the most aggressive industries when it comes to protecting their intellectual property, which has led to some less-than-fair policies being put in place by YouTube in order to mollify record labels. Policies such as granting copyright owners the ability to claim ad revenue from your video, even if the video contains more than just their music.

YouTube also has automatic Content ID in place, that can recognise copyrighted content without the need for a human to flag it.

This may save YouTube a great deal of expense compared to paying people to hunt through an absurd amount of video, but it can lead to problems for cover artists, such as Seth Everman’s cover of Billie Eilish’s Bad Guy. As Seth’s pinned comment states, the cover was instantly flagged for copyright despite being made using household items such as couch cushions and pots and pans.

So how, then, do you go about monetising this kind of content? Fortunately, there are plenty of ways, so read to discover how to make money doing covers on YouTube.

How to Make Money Doing Covers on YouTube 1

The Basics

Before getting into how you can make money doing covers on YouTube, it is important to have a basic grasp of the legalities of cover songs. We say “basic” because we’re not going to attempt to explain actual law to you—this is a YouTube blog, and there are no lawyers here.

The long and short of it is that in order to legally make money from a cover song, you would have to have agreements in place with the songwriters and publishers, and the licenses you would gain from this would almost certainly require you to pay royalty fees.

This may be fine for an established musician who is going to release a cover song through traditional channels, but it is not exactly practical for a small YouTube musician who is just looking for a little added exposure, or merely wants to cover their favourite song.

YouTube have mechanisms in place to remove the need for every YouTube cover to have an individual licensing agreement in place in the form their Content ID system, but this doesn’t help with monetisation and, depending on the rights holder, can result in your video being blocked in certain countries—or blocked altogether.

So, now we’ve told you why you can’t make money from covers on YouTube, let’s get into how you can make money from covers on YouTube.

YouTube Partner Programme

Here’s the good news; the YouTube Partner Programme has provisions for cover songs that allow you to share revenue easily between you and the relevant entities with little more than a few clicks.

The bad news? This only applies to songs that are part of an agreement with rights holders to enable this kind of thing.

Now, granted, there are a lot of songs included in these deals, with plenty of popular songs and current hits among them. But it is not everything, and you may find yourself wanting to cover something that is not part of YouTube’s deal and thus cannot be monetised in this way.

For the songs that are part of the deal, you will be able to share the revenue with the rights holders, and you will get be paid on a pro-rata basis.

This is one example of how to make money doing covers on YouTube, but it is not exactly a reliable method, and even when it works, you are getting a reduced percentage of YouTube revenue, which has already gained a reputation as a less-than-stellar way to get paid for your time.

The actual rate you get paid may vary, but you shouldn’t expect to see more than 40% of the revenue your videos generate. So let’s look at other ways you can earn money from your cover songs.

How to Make Money Doing Covers on YouTube

Promote Original Music

It will likely seem obvious to many YouTube cover artists since a lot of you will have gotten into cover songs as a means to bring attention to your channel and promote your own songs. This very method is one of the best ways you can parlay your cover song success into YouTube revenue.

Be sure to put your own spin on the covers you perform, however.

The goal is to draw people in with your unique style and take on the song, and then providing your viewers with a call to action like, “If you like this, why not check out my original song…”, and it will be considerably less effective if your original songs are entirely different in tone and style to your cover songs.

There is no barrier to monetising original content, so you are free to monetise an original song through YouTube’s Partner Programme, get sponsors, or do anything else you would be free to do with your own intellectual property.

Promote Live Performances

In much the same way your cover songs can be used to promote your original music, they can also be used as a means of getting eyeballs on any upcoming shows you are playing.

It is common for established musicians to make a substantial portion of their income from live performances, so it will likely be something a serious musician will want to get into regardless—especially since live performances can make up almost all of your income as a musician just getting started.

And if you’re doing it anyway, why not leverage YouTube to get more interest in those live shows?

If you go down this route, make sure you have easy to find links and information regarding your live shows.

You want your viewers to have to put in as little effort as possible if they decide to come out to see you live, so don’t force them to hunt around for the right links and dates.

If you need help in promoting your content FOR FREE, I have a great list of all the best places to share your content in my blog.

How to Make Money Doing Covers on YouTube 4

Sell Your Cover Songs Elsewhere

If you go to the trouble of creating a cover song for YouTube, don’t feel like you have to limit it to just that platform. There are many outlets to sell music digitally these days, without the need for recording deals or record labels. If you make a popular cover, giving viewers the option to buy the song or listen to it on other revenue-generating platforms like Spotify and iTunes is a great way to earn some extra money.

Of course, the issues with licensing and ownership are still there, and we would not recommend you just putting a song out there without ensuring you go through the proper channels. Fortunately, there are plenty of music distribution services out there for small artists, and many of them have provisions set up for cover songs, meaning you can release them entirely legally.

Every platform is different, and this is a YouTube blog, so rather than explaining the process, here are a few of the top music distribution platforms that allow you to release cover songs to services like Spotify.

Crowd Funding and Donations

This is an excellent method of earning money through YouTube regardless of what the actual content is because it serves not only as a revenue source but also as an endorsement of your channel.

Since people who contribute are actively choosing to do so, you will benefit from a dedicated fanbase who are more likely to want to support financially.

There are several ways to go about setting this up, with Patreon being the most prominent and popular example. There are also platforms like Ko-Fi, as well as simply accepting donations directly through a payment processor like PayPal.

If you decide to try this method of earning money from covers, consider giving incentives to your supporters. Such incentives can be as little as a thank you at the end of a video, or they can be as much as tickets to a live show, or merchandise included as a thank you.

It could also be early access to videos or exclusive content.

The point is that by providing supporters with something extra, you not only make them feel appreciated, but you incentivise others to support you as well.

Making Your Cover Videos

Knowing how to monetise your covers is a relatively small part of the battle. Before you worry about that, you should be working on giving your videos the best chance of success you possibly can.

Now, as far as the music goes, that’s all on you.

Music is a very subjective medium, and you will no doubt have your own style and genre preferences when you perform.

All you can do there is make the technically best version of whatever it is that you want to make.

But regarding the video itself, there are things you incorporate that will help you succeed as a YouTube cover artist.

How to Make Money Doing Covers on YouTube 5

Create Engaging Videos

While it is generally true that the content speaks for itself, it is not that simple with cover songs. It is not merely a matter of making great music and hoping that the quality will shine through because there are so many talented musicians making music on YouTube.

You need to do something to make your videos stand out from the crowd, and you will struggle to do that in the audio alone – take a look at my resources page for some eye catching graphics, backing tracks, and design tools.

Consider including the lyrics in your video, possibly in a fun animated way, and at the very least shoot something with you playing the song.

You want viewers to connect with you, and they are unlikely to do that if they never see you.

Be Creative

There are only so many ways you can cover a song in a way that is still appealing to a large enough number of people. And, with the amount of YouTube musicians out there doing cover songs, the number of unique takes there are left for popular songs are starting to become a little scarce.

Of course, you can always cover less popular songs, but the problem there is that less popular music means less interest in your cover song.

Don’t be afraid to get creative with your cover.

We mentioned Seth Everman’s Bad Guy video earlier on. Even though that particular cover was a comedic video, rather than a straight music video, it nevertheless generated a lot of interest for the unconventional way he played the song.

We’re not saying you should cover a song using furniture exclusively as your instrument, but looking for new and creative ways to make your cover videos is an excellent way to get noticed.

Another great example of this is Postmodern Jukebox, a channel that exclusively creates covers of contemporary songs in the style of classic genres from as far back as the early 1900s. Their videos feature a full band accompaniment with everyone dressed in the style of the era they are emulating and make for a fascinating watch.

Another example is mashups, where more than one song or style is brought together to create something new. A very popular example of this is 10 Second Songs, where the talented Anthony Vincent performs songs in the style of a variety of different artists.

How to Make Money Doing Covers on YouTube 3

Keep An Eye Out For Trends

Trend-chasing can feel a little “dirty” to some, but cover videos are an extremely competitive space, and it will take a lot of effort—and not a small amount of luck—to get established in this niche. By putting out your own take on a popular trend, you can bring new viewers to your channel.

And the good thing about this kind of viewer is they will have subscribed because they liked your take on the song, which means they are more likely to stick around.

Trends can come in many forms, such as old songs that inexplicably get a second life (see: Rick Rolling) or new viral hits that take the world by storm.

Whatever the trend, be sure to stay true to your unique style because ultimately, you want people to come to your channel for you, not a version of you that you put on once.

Top 5 Tools To Get You Started on YouTube

Very quickly before you go here are 5 amazing tools I have used every day to grow my YouTube channel from 0 to 30K subscribers in the last 12 months that I could not live without.

1. VidIQ helps boost my views and get found in search

I almost exclusively switched to VidIQ from a rival in 2020.

Within 12 months I tripled the size of my channel and very quickly learnt the power of thumbnails, click through rate and proper search optimization. Best of all, they are FREE!

2. Adobe Creative Suite helps me craft amazing looking thumbnails and eye-catching videos

I have been making youtube videos on and off since 2013.

When I first started I threw things together in Window Movie Maker, cringed at how it looked but thought “that’s the best I can do so it’ll have to do”.

Big mistake!

I soon realized the move time you put into your editing and the more engaging your thumbnails are the more views you will get and the more people will trust you enough to subscribe.

That is why I took the plunge and invested in my editing and design process with Adobe Creative Suite. They offer a WIDE range of tools to help make amazing videos, simple to use tools for overlays, graphics, one click tools to fix your audio and the very powerful Photoshop graphics program to make eye-catching thumbnails.

Best of all you can get a free trial for 30 days on their website, a discount if you are a student and if you are a regular human being it starts from as little as £9 per month if you want to commit to a plan.

3. Rev.com helps people read my videos

You can’t always listen to a video.

Maybe you’re on a bus, a train or sat in a living room with a 5 year old singing baby shark on loop… for HOURS. Or, you are trying to make as little noise as possible while your new born is FINALLY sleeping.

This is where Rev can help you or your audience consume your content on the go, in silence or in a language not native to the video.

Rev.com can help you translate your videos, transcribe your videos, add subtitles and even convert those subtitles into other languages – all from just $1.50 per minute.

A GREAT way to find an audience and keep them hooked no matter where they are watching your content.

4. Learn new skills for FREE with Skillshare

I SUCK reading books to learn, but I LOVE online video courses.

Every month I learn something new. Editing, writing, video skills, how to cook, how to run a business – even how to meditate to calm a busy mind.

I find all of these for FREE with Skillshare – Sign up, pick all the courses you want and cancel anytime you need.

5. Shutterstock helps me add amazing video b-roll cutaways

I mainly make tutorials and talking head videos.

And in this modern world this can be a little boring if you don’t see something funky every once in a while.

I try with overlays, jump cuts and being funny but my secret weapon is b-roll overlay content.

I can talk about skydiving, food, money, kids, cats – ANYTHING I WANT – with a quick search on the Shutterstock website I can find a great looking clip to overlay on my videos, keeping them entertained and watching for longer.

They have a wide library of videos, graphics, images and even a video maker tool and it wont break the bank with plans starting from as little as £8.25 ($9) per month.

Categories
DEEP DIVE ARTICLE HOW TO GET MORE VIEWS ON YOUTUBE TIPS & TRICKS YOUTUBE

How Much of a Song Can You Use on YouTube Without Copyright?

Music is a powerful tool in video editing. It can add emphasis, emotional impact, and generally change the whole tone of a scene or clip. There is a wealth of free music available, of course.

YouTube itself has a significant library of free-to-use music that you can choose from. But there are times when royalty-free music won’t do.

Whether you’re reviewing songs or you just need a particular song for your content, you’ll no doubt be aware of the minefield that is copyrighted music. You may even be aware of fair use, but don’t worry if you’re not; we’re going to get into all of that soon.

Most YouTubers are aware that you can’t just grab copyrighted music (or any content, for that matter) and put it in your video. At least, not without inevitable consequences. At best you will lose your ability to monetize that video, at worst you will get a copyright strike against your channel, and enough of those will lose your channel entirely!

So, how much of a song can you use on YouTube without copyright coming to bite you in the backside? – The short answer is none! You will need a buy a license to use popular tracks or will need to enter into revenue shares with some artists if they are part of the YouTube Audio Library. If you want music in your videos it is best to use royalty free services or make your own music.

The answer more honest answer is, it complicated – so if you’re with us, we’re about to dive a little deeper.

What is “Fair Use”?

As we’re about to get into a subject matter that strays a little close to legal advice, we must stress that is emphatically not legal advice.

Always seek the advice of a qualified law professional before doing anything that might potentially land you in legal trouble. Now, with that out of the way, let’s get into what fair use is.

Fair use is the name given to the use of copyrighted material in some instances where the use is limited or transformative. You may be wondering what “transformative” means, and you wouldn’t be alone. Inordinate amounts of money have been spent trying to find a clear definition of what constitutes transformative but to no avail.

Established examples of a transformative use of copyrighted material include commentary and criticism, such as news programs showing clips of something accompanied by commentary about that thing. Another example is parody videos.

There is a common myth or misunderstanding that you are allowed to use a certain amount of copyrighted content—a few seconds, say—and you will be protected by fair use. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Fair use covers how copyrighted content is used, not the amount of it.

While it is highly unlikely, it is theoretically possible that the use of copyrighted material in its entirety could be protected by fair use. It would be tough to justify, of course, and the less of a piece of copyrighted material you use, the easier it is to claim that you are using it for transformative means, rather than just stealing it.

It is here that the myth of using only a few seconds comes from; most successful examples of fair use on YouTube are short clips, but the shortness is not what makes them a successful example of fair use. We’ll get more into what these successful examples look like shortly.

To avoid falling into dangerous waters I always use licensing companies like LickD – I pay a small fee per track and know I am covered from all the legal potholes. Go check LickD out, they have a wide selection of popular song and chart music on their website and you can even get one track free!

Fair Use is Not Protection

The main trap people fall into when dealing with fair use is in thinking that it is some kind of protection against copyright claims or lawsuits, but this is not the case.

Fair use is a defence, not a protection. There is no one-size-fits-all application of fair use that a company like YouTube could apply to your usage of copyrighted material. As such, fair use is decided on a case-by-case basis…

…in court.

Yes, unfortunately, the only way to prove you are using copyrighted content within the remit of fair use is by going to court and having them agree with you. And, unless you have a lot of spare cash and time on your hands, the only way that is likely to happen is if you get sued by a copyright holder. Not ideal.

An unfortunate side effect of this is that large copyright holders tend to bludgeon smaller entities with copyright take-downs, knowing full well that the average YouTuber will not have the means to challenge the claim on a legal footing. Combine this with increasingly automated copyright infringement detection employed by YouTube, and you have a scenario in which it is very difficult to use copyrighted content in any capacity.

There are even instances of YouTubers creating cover versions of popular songs using household objects—such as couch cushions and doors—getting copyright claims against them by the owner of the song they are covering.

If you are struggling for places to find free to use and completely safe music – I made a deep dive video on all the places you can find music for free online.

How Much of a Song Can You Use on YouTube Without Copyright Issues?

Now that we’ve taken a deeper dive into how fair use works, we hope it makes more sense when we tell you that the answer to how much of a song you can use without copyright problems is, practically speaking, none.

The reason we say this is because the music industry is particularly aggressive when it comes to protecting its intellectual property. They are not interested in the fair use arguments and will go after any use of their music that they become aware of. Couple that with YouTube’s automated copyright infringement detection, and you have a situation where any attempt to use copyrighted music will likely get flagged.

If the infringement exists (that is, the copyright holder attributed does, in fact, own the copyright to the material in your video), then your only recourse would be to take that copyright holder to court.

It would be extremely unlikely to reach a point where the copyright holder would take you to court, however, as YouTube has plenty of mechanisms in place to protect their interests. From monetizing your video and sending them the proceeds, to removing your channel from the platform entirely.

YouTube will not allow you to infringe copyright continually, so it would take an extremely keen legal department at some music label to see you in taken to court before YouTube resolves the issue for them.

Can YouTubers Control Which Ads Are Shown? 1

Examples of Fair Use

Copying works across a variety of different mediums, including broadcast, is permitted when the use is for examination or instruction, in an academic or industry setting, as long as it meets certain guidelines. Obviously, this is unlikely to apply to your average YouTuber.

An example more relevant to YouTube, however, is using copyrighted content for quotation, critique, or review. Of course, if you post an entire album with little to no commentary, you will struggle to make an argument for fair use. The amount of copyrighted content should be quite limited, and only just enough to get whatever point you are trying to make across.

Other criteria for this kind of fair use include the copyrighted material being publicly available and the source of the content being acknowledged

You can also use copyrighted material of reporting current news, though the situations in which copyrighted music would fit into this category are rare.

Parody, as we mentioned earlier, is also a form of fair use, but this is another area where the boundaries for what constitutes parody are far from clear. Any borderline case may need to be tested in court to receive any kind of definitive decision on the matter.

The final example of fair use involves text and data mining, which clearly doesn’t have any bearing on a discussion about using music in YouTube videos.

Soundproofing Tips for YouTubers

Can You Use Music in YouTube Videos at All?

There are certainly situations where you could use music—even copyrighted music—in your YouTube videos. If you were to obtain the permission of the copyright holder, for instance, you would be legally allowed to use that music as long as you stuck to whatever terms you agreed, of course.

As we mentioned earlier, there is also non-copyrighted music or music with an open license such as Creative Commons. YouTube provides an impressive library of such music for the very reason of helping YouTubers make their content without falling afoul of copyright strikes. Remember, they want you to succeed.

Finally, you could, of course, use your own music. If you make music and you have not given the rights to that music to anyone else, you are free to do with it as you please.

How Much of a Song Can You Use on YouTube Without Copyright?

Should I Use Copyrighted Music in my YouTube Videos?

The only truly safe option when considering using music in your YouTube videos is to use royalty-free music that is licensed for commercial use.

The commercial aspect is important even if you do not monetize your videos, because you may decide to monetize them someday, and, in any case, some people may disagree with your idea of commercial. They may even be wrong, but you don’t want to have to go to court to prove that.

If you can get permission for the music you should be okay to use it in theory, however, it is worth noting that YouTube’s copyright infringement detection is something of a firehose when it comes to seeking out violations.

There are many examples in the past of YouTubers going to great lengths to obtain permission to use copyrighted material, only to have YouTube flag it as a violation.

In some case, copyright holders themselves have fallen afoul of this system. It has not been uncommon for YouTubers who are part of a content network upload a video of one of their own songs on a private channel and get flagged for copyright because their song was initially played on the content network’s channel.

It is far from a perfect system.

Can YouTubers Control Which Ads Are Shown? 5

What Happens if I Get Caught Using Copyrighted Music?

The consequences vary depending on things like if you are a repeat offender, or how the copyright holder wants to handle the situation. If you are caught infringing copyright, and it is your first time, you will likely just receive a strike against your account. Enough of these strikes, however, and your account could be removed entirely.

In some cases, the copyright holder will opt to leave your video alone, but monetize it and claim the earnings. In those cases, you will not be able to monetize your video yourself, even if the offending music only makes up a small portion of your video. Unfortunately, this is a risk you will have to accept if you want to use copyrighted music.

As mentioned above, it is unlikely you would ever see a courtroom from infringing copyright on YouTube. But, as mentioned even further above, nothing in this post should be considered legal advice. The fact that it is unlikely that you will end up in court should not be seen as a guarantee that you will not end up in court.

How Much of a Song Can You Use on YouTube Without Copyright? 1

Conclusions

The world of YouTube copyright is a bit of a minefield when it comes to knowing exactly what you can and can’t do.

The only way to be genuinely risk-free is only ever to use royalty-free music that is licensed for commercial use. Any time you use copyrighted material, even if it is as clear cut fair use as it gets, could see you receiving copyright strikes against your channel, or worse.

If you do have to use copyrighted music, however, remember the guidelines for what constitutes fair use. Only use the absolute minimum of copyrighted music required to get your point across. Make sure the focus of the video is not the content.

Even with some additional commentary, if the point of the video is very clearly just to listen to the music, it will not be considered fair use.

But, most importantly, remember that fair use is not a protection against legal action. If a copyright holder gets a bee in their bonnet about your use of their music and decides to get the lawyers out, you will not be able to hide behind fair use.

You will need to go to court and convince a judge that your use of the content was fair use. It may not be a likely scenario, but it is one you will have to consider if you insist on using copyrighted music in your videos.

Top 5 Tools To Get You Started on YouTube

Very quickly before you go here are 5 amazing tools I have used every day to grow my YouTube channel from 0 to 30K subscribers in the last 12 months that I could not live without.

1. VidIQ helps boost my views and get found in search

I almost exclusively switched to VidIQ from a rival in 2020.

Within 12 months I tripled the size of my channel and very quickly learnt the power of thumbnails, click through rate and proper search optimization. Best of all, they are FREE!

2. Adobe Creative Suite helps me craft amazing looking thumbnails and eye-catching videos

I have been making youtube videos on and off since 2013.

When I first started I threw things together in Window Movie Maker, cringed at how it looked but thought “that’s the best I can do so it’ll have to do”.

Big mistake!

I soon realized the move time you put into your editing and the more engaging your thumbnails are the more views you will get and the more people will trust you enough to subscribe.

That is why I took the plunge and invested in my editing and design process with Adobe Creative Suite. They offer a WIDE range of tools to help make amazing videos, simple to use tools for overlays, graphics, one click tools to fix your audio and the very powerful Photoshop graphics program to make eye-catching thumbnails.

Best of all you can get a free trial for 30 days on their website, a discount if you are a student and if you are a regular human being it starts from as little as £9 per month if you want to commit to a plan.

3. Rev.com helps people read my videos

You can’t always listen to a video.

Maybe you’re on a bus, a train or sat in a living room with a 5 year old singing baby shark on loop… for HOURS. Or, you are trying to make as little noise as possible while your new born is FINALLY sleeping.

This is where Rev can help you or your audience consume your content on the go, in silence or in a language not native to the video.

Rev.com can help you translate your videos, transcribe your videos, add subtitles and even convert those subtitles into other languages – all from just $1.50 per minute.

A GREAT way to find an audience and keep them hooked no matter where they are watching your content.

4. Learn new skills for FREE with Skillshare

I SUCK reading books to learn, but I LOVE online video courses.

Every month I learn something new. Editing, writing, video skills, how to cook, how to run a business – even how to meditate to calm a busy mind.

I find all of these for FREE with Skillshare – Sign up, pick all the courses you want and cancel anytime you need.

5. Shutterstock helps me add amazing video b-roll cutaways

I mainly make tutorials and talking head videos.

And in this modern world this can be a little boring if you don’t see something funky every once in a while.

I try with overlays, jump cuts and being funny but my secret weapon is b-roll overlay content.

I can talk about skydiving, food, money, kids, cats – ANYTHING I WANT – with a quick search on the Shutterstock website I can find a great looking clip to overlay on my videos, keeping them entertained and watching for longer.

They have a wide library of videos, graphics, images and even a video maker tool and it wont break the bank with plans starting from as little as £8.25 ($9) per month.

Categories
MARKETING SOCIAL MEDIA TIPS & TRICKS YOUTUBE

How to Use Copyrighted Music on Youtube @getlickd

Download Music for YouTube videos – Looking to use chart music in your YouTube videos without getting stung with copyright issues? Asking yourself – How to Use Copyrighted Music on Youtube Legally? Then LICKD might a a solution for you. LICKD helps you license popular songs that maybe in the charts of trending and put then into your videos for a small fee without any major issues from the YouTube Bots.

TRY LICKd – https://lickd.grsm.io/alanspicer5715

Lickd is a digital platform helping YouTube content creators legally use the music they love. We provide commercial music from real labels for licensing in YouTube videos without the fear of a Creator losing their ad revenue to a Copyright Claim.

How can I legally use copyrighted music on YouTube? – When you get a third party content claim YouTube suggest you do one of the following:

  • Acknowledge it. If you don’t mind the ads, you don’t have to do anything.
  • Remove or swap the music. *
  • Share revenue. If you’re a partner you can share revenues for song covers.
  • Dispute the claim if you believe you have the right to use the music.

* In 2019, YouTube added new features to make it easier for creators to resolve the claims. In particular, YouTube configured their post claim tools – Add or Replace a Song, Remove a Song, and Trimming – to automatically release claims on some of the cases.

The best option is to secure the permission of the copyright owner to use their music on YouTube and to have the owner retract the claim. This may be free (as with Creative Commons or Public Domain music) or you may need to pay a licensing fee.

Getting the permission (or the license) may be easy or hard depending on what kind of music you’d like to use.

If you are after a popular commercial song this usually involves getting in touch with the publisher and working out a deal. As you can imagine, the licensing fees in this case may be quite substantial.