Shouldn't the complaint be “YouTube shut down my gaming channel at Vice’s direction without even contacting me.”?
Though I'm not sure even that is a particularly valid complaint given the authors admission that he was probably infringing the trademark: because in that case, as soon as YouTube was aware of what was going on, it was also quite likely knowingly violating trademark, and the only option that did not involve risking incurring liability was to stop doing that. Now, if there was a contractual relationship which exposed YouTube to parallel liability risk for cutting of a channel for potential infringement improperly, then they'd have to carefully weigh their action, but like every online service provider of broad public services, they've structured their contracts well to minimize liability risk for actions against their users based on site policy or legal compliance issues even when the decision is ultimately erroneous, so there's a definite assymetry in disputes even where the who is in the right is a 50/50 tossup from the info available to YouTube. Or even where the complaining party is most likely wrong, as a small risk of large damage is still a significant risk.
A more cynical view would be that contacting YouTube has little effect. Being publicly noisy with speculation works better.
I often saw people on Reddit refer other youtuber to H3H3 because they did have great contact with Youtube (sadly because they were often victims of how Youtube deal with that kind of stuff).
From the article: "I haven’t heard back from YouTube yet on the appeal I submitted."
YouTube and Google in general are notorious for not having easy-to-reach support.
Posted March 1st morning.
Maybe that's true, or maybe there's a bias where we only hear online about cases where Youtube was slow. Hard to verify, but in this case it seems like the author didn't even wait before posting.
Nevermind that such dismisal conjurs up the possibility of enforced customer reachability via state regulation, but hey, at least they lived the neo_lib.a dream while it blasted.
Well, yeah, I was focussing on problems with the complaint under the assumption, made for the same of discussion, that the authors interpretation of the factual events were entirely accurate.
I'm not sure he's right about that.
> Hey @YouTube you just booted me out of my youtube & all my google accounts for "impersonating" someone. My legal name IS Meghan Trainor. My website: http://meghantrainor.com with several decades of articles about my work. I can't even access the form to correct this! Help!
(Meghan Trainor is also the name of a popular singer/songwriter)
To YouTube's credit, they are responding via that Twitter (after 12+ hours). Amusingly they ask her to "send us a link to your channel URL or a video that you've posted in the past" and she can't because her Google account was also apparently suspended.
I think I see the biggest problem here.
I've spoken to YouTubers who started off keeping backups but quickly realized it was nowhere near cost effective for them to do so. And even if you do pay enough to keep those backups around, there's no way to back up the links themselves. For some videos it doesn't matter whether you reupload them or not, if it's not available at the original link it might as well still be dead.
> …if it's not available at the original link it might as well still be dead.
True, I can believe that, and this doesn't help that.
Because 1 TB drives are expensive?
I realize that wasn't always the case (look, I'm old enough to remember when a 5 MB hard drive cost close to $10k for a personal computer system) - but I still think it's a bad excuse. If the data is important enough to put up for others, then it's important enough to back up (even if only the edited and compressed version).
Today, it makes no sense at all not to keep a backup. Even using DropBox or Google Drive is plenty cheap.
Your other points do stand, however.
Spend that money on microphones and editing equipment.
How much raw content (in GB) does a typical Youtube content creator actually have?
I think you're looking at a very extreme end of the spectrum here. Is this channel a large company focused on pushing out content? Because I have a hard time imagining how an independent creator can churn out an average of 5 hours of video a day, every day, for years on end - unless they're just wearing a GoPro and streaming their daily life.
Most YouTubers I follow seem to post a 10-20 minutes video a few times a week, and even that probably counts as very active. E.g. PewDiePie, likely the most successful creator on Youtube at the moment, posts a ~15 minute video every day.
He does have a manager for non video production workloads, (sponsorships mostly) but otherwise yes, that is how much content is released daily.
He's definitely the highest volume of the ones I've heard that statement from, but not by as large a margin as you might think.
Also on top of that he does appear in some of his wife's videos without uploading to his own channel in an attempt to build her audience as well.
EDIT: And no, it is not a go-pro lifestyle channel. It's just a dude putting in approximately 10 hours of work a day every day. He takes vacations a few times a year but otherwise is just constantly working and putting out content. He has also started taking off Saturdays and shuffling work around to fit that, so it might be longer than 10 hours now.
But the key is to use an account that’s not tied in any way to the account used on YouTube.
It does seem some you tubers are starting to do this. Only annoying thing is there’s a 750gig upload cap per day.
Storing your YouTube backups with a Google account definitely does not count as an off site backup.
There was this group of folks who bought stolen pixels(unknowingly) & all of their gmail accounts got suspended & only after much hoopla did they manage to get it back.
Google is well known to be aggressive in closing related accounts.
If the user still has access to the account, Google Takeout lets you download the original videos IIRC.
I don't understand how the author can just assume the cause and intent of this take down when he hasn't even contacted Youtube yet. To me it sounds like a misunderstanding or bug.
Public call-outs are the only option they've left, so it's unquestionably what they deserve.
If you have years of experience sending support queries to /dev/null, at what point is it okay to just start assuming it's a waste of time? 2 attempts? 10? 50?
> I haven’t heard back from YouTube yet on the appeal I submitted.
To be fair, we don't know how much time has elapsed between submitting the appeal and making the Medium post.
> I awoke this morning to a barrage of messages from fans of mine wondering where my content had gone.
Since this blog post was posted today, it seems like not very long.
That's a level of cost externalisation that dumps risk and impacts not only on users, but employees and innocent bystanders of the company in question.
Contacting Google on virtually any matter, as a non-paying or paying customer, is exceedingly difficult and an abysmally poor experience.
Always host your video on an alternative network you pay someone for and have regular backups of. The time is coming when YouTube will not be a viable place for creators.
(Aside: if your proposed model includes the word "cryptocurrency," you fail, do not pass go, do not collect two hundred dollars. Rent and taxes are denominated in real money, thou must do likewise.)
For all the huge, gaping problems that YouTube has, and right now in another thread I'm going to the mat on exactly that, centralization won and will continue to win and so we need to use the big lever (y'know, the "being in a society" one) to fix what's centralized, not expect people to scatter to the four winds of irrelevance.
It may have won the current battle, but who really knows if centralization will be the norm in say 10, 20 or 50 years. There have been lots of instances where a technology or company seemed to have won only to loose to an upstart that they never saw coming. And when they loose they tend to loose big. Getting completely obliterated within a few short years. Nokia and BlackBerry phones are relevant examples.
Doesn’t this just validate their fears?
Are there risks? Sure, self hosting your work can always be risky, and there's always the possibility someone genuinely will want to take legal action.
But many, many more won't. Many more know full well that they don't have a legal leg to stand on when it comes to takedowns of YouTube videos or what not. YouTube and other platforms not giving a damn about fair use is a gold mine for large companies and unscrupulous actors.
Self hosting avoids that, and makes those with questionable ethics (like say, Vice Media in this example) actually think 'do we really believe we've got enough of a case here' before trying to strike down criticism or what not.
Oh, and the time is coming? No, YouTube already isn't a viable place for many creators.
Looks to me like it already is.
As things are now, there is no other "market creators will go to" since I don't believe Dailymotion or Metacafe are viable either.
Before the first adpocalypse, more people could live off Youtube revenue than do now. Youtube is going through the third or fourth adpocalypse. Those who can still live off Youtube are lucky, and should be looking to diversify their income. For everyone else, there's places like Patreon.
Surely ad blocking would mimic the slow growth rates of browser adoption.
If you can make more from YouTube ads and per-video Patreon subscribers than you could by cutting your video production by half to fit in a part-time job, it might make more sense to stick to just videos but keep tabs on local part-timer opportunities. Less stable, but a higher net income until your channel goes down -> more able to last until you can get a part-time job? Not sure; I've been lucky enough not to have to worry about that sort of thing, so this is mostly speculation.
As a platform for making a living the company is completely untrustworthy: they are impossible to contact, quick to act and deceitful. I wouldn’t trust them with my livelihood myself. I mean, they were caught sending robotic replies in response to support complaints disguised as legitimate messages, what else do they have to do to prove to creators that they’re only good for hosting but the revenue has to come from somewhere else and a direct line of contact needs to exist towards fans in case they decide to randomly disappear your channel?