YouTube’s copyright system has consistently been criticized for being far too overzealous in its policing of videos, but a new update to their policy has content creators cheering on the company for finally making a move in the right direction.


A new post on the YouTube Creators Google blog explains the shift in policy: “[G]oing forward, our policies will forbid copyright owners from using our Manual Claiming tool to monetize creator videos with very short or unintentional uses of music. […]¬†Without the option to monetize, some copyright owners may choose to leave very short or unintentional uses unclaimed.”

This is fantastic news for creators who either review music or create their videos in uncontrollable conditions such as on the street or in a restaurant where they don’t have control over any sounds or music playing in the background. It’s sure to deter copyright trolls who endlessly search specifically for slip ups and claim monetization on another user’s video.

It’s important to note, however, that “this change only impacts claims made with the Manual Claiming tool, where the rightsholder is actively reviewing the video. Claims created by the Content ID match system, which are the vast majority, are not impacted by this policy.”

Enforcement of these new policies will begin “mid-September,” around a month from today. YouTube reminds its creators that the best way to avoid a copyright strike is to not use unlicensed content in the first place.

You can read the full blog post here.