YouTube standing by its copyright policy after angry gamers speak out

Letter to affected users features no apology or policy reversal, but rather an explanation of the scenario and tips for creators going forward.

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YouTube is standing by its controversial copyright policy after channel operators recently reported a huge spike in copyright claims made against videos featuring game content.

The letter, obtained by Kotaku, contains no apology or policy reversal. Instead, it explains the scenario and makes clear that YouTube is not going to budge on its stance.

YouTube explained that the spike in copyright claims is a result of the advancements made to the company's Content ID system that automatically detects and flags copyrighted material. The Google-owned company said that many videos are being flagged for copyright infringement because of music featured in the content.

"For example, a record label may own music playing in the video (even in the background), a music distributor may own a game's soundtrack, or a game publisher may own in-game cinematic content," YouTube said.

"Also, online rights are often resold to companies like music labels and aggregators. While you might not recognize the owner, this doesn't necessarily mean their claims are invalid," the company explained.

The letter also includes a few tips for video producers to follow to avoid having their content flagged for copyright infringement. YouTube suggested that users switch off in-game music to avoid being faced with claims from license holders.

"Whether gaming, music or comedy is your passion, know that we love what you do," YouTube said. "We've worked hard to design Content ID and other tools to give everyone--from individual creators to media companies--the opportunity to make great videos and earn money. As YouTube grows, we want to make sure we're providing the right product features to ensure that everyone continues to thrive."

More information about YouTube's Content ID copyright claim system is available at YouTube's support website.

Last week, major publishers Blizzard Entertainment, Capcom, Ubisoft, and Deep Silver pledged to help those affected by the spike in copyright claims.

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