Steven Crowder, the online news and entertainment personality famous for his “Louder with Crowder” show and stunts at left wing college campuses throughout the United States, has been punished by YouTube’s copyright system for a parody video he says was entirely original and held no copyrighted content.
In episode 459 of “Louder with Crowder”, a parody song was used that sounded similar to the song “Calling Dr. Love” by KISS. Warner Chappell, the legal arm of Warner Music Group, determined this constituted a copyright violation, and requested YouTube to take immediate action against Crowder.
Typically, if a video holds copyrighted music, the person who created the video will receive no compensation for the ads played during or before the video. This money instead goes to the copyright holder.
In this case, Crowder will receive no compensation from YouTube for the hour-long show he starred in and produced, which featured various right wing guests from around the world, including Paul Joseph Watson. Instead, Warner Chappell would be paid for Crowder’s work due to the copyrighted content.
While many would consider it absurd for an hour long video’s profits to be handed over because of a three-minute song, the absurdity is compounded by the fact that Crowder did not use the song. His production team created an original track that shared similarities with the original.
In other words, Crowder’s video was demonetized because audio used in his show sounded similar to audio owned by the Warner Chappell.
Crowder then took the extraordinary step of appealing this decision, which if done frequently, can lead to the termination of a YouTube account.
Unfortunately for the online content producer, his appeal was immediately denied not by YouTube, but by Warner Chappell.
So now Youtube and complicit corporations will LITERALLY take down a video for including a direct parody track that we CREATED FROM SCRATCH! This system needs fixing. Now. pic.twitter.com/JrBNGRrsyP
— Steven Crowder (@scrowder) April 23, 2019
Because Warner Chappell denied his appeal, claiming they do indeed own the music in the video even though it is an originally produced track created by Crowder’s team, Crowder’s account is in jeopardy. YouTube is giving Crowder 7 days to reverse his appeal and allow all profits generated from the video to be garnished by Warner Chappell, otherwise, YouTube will delete his video and place a “copyright strike” on his account.
With only three copyright strikes, YouTube accounts can be placed in a limited state, or even terminated.
This creates an environment where YouTube content creators are expected to simply bow and submit to any large company or individual claiming copyright. YouTube itself does not mediate disputes, and instead allows the party alleging it has been injured to make all determinations.
This would be akin to allowing any person in civil court to act as plaintiff and judge: they claim they were wronged, and then immediately judge in their own favor.
Many YouTubers, including the iconic channel PewDiePie, have lamented YouTube’s copyright system.
In a video posted earlier this year, the YouTuber revealed how the copyright strike system can be used not only by large corporations to harass independent content creators, but also by individuals on YouTube as a tool to censor speech they disagree with.
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