I have been using royalty free creative commons licensed music from incompetech.com for well over a year.  Not only that but anytime anyone talks about needing music that they can use in monetized videos that doesn’t cost them a fortune I’ve encouraged them to check out the huge list of royalty free titles at incompetech.com

Recently, Kevin MacLeod (the genius behind the music) decided to use the services of a company called AudioMicro 1 to earn some money from his music.

They are using Youtube’s content id system to claim his music in the videos of anyone that uses it.  For NON-partners this has almost NO effect.  For Partners however, things aren’t so good.

When the content id match happens youtube automatically rejects the partner’s claim submitting that video for revenue sharing.  Instead, AudioMicro 1 is getting the benefit of any and all revenue generated by views and ad clicks on that video, presumably on behalf of the artist.

To remedy the situation the partner has to dispute that claim.  This can take anywhere from one to four or five days.

Once the dispute is processed and AudioMicro1 drops the claim, the partner can finally submit that video for revenue sharing.

The problem is that by then it’s too late.

You see, unless a video suddenly goes viral, most of the views it will ever get happen in the first day or two after it’s uploaded.  Because of the content id claim the revenue those views generate is lost forever to the partner.

Essentially this means that AudioMicro1 is STEALING that revenue from the partners.

On his website (incompetech.com), Kevin Macleaod has said that all anyone has to do is email AudioMicro1 and request that they be whitelisted to “opt out” of this mess.

Even though I shouldn’t have to, I did this.  I got an email from AudioMicro1 telling me that I was whitelisted and that there would be no problems, that claims would have no effect on me or my partner status.

I made a test video that used several pieces of music from incompetech.com.

The video had barely finished uploading when I got two emails from youtube.  One was an automated notification that the video had content owned or licensed by AudioMicro1.  This in spite of the fact that they had just told me this wouldn’t happen anymore.

The second email was from Partner Support informing me that they could not approve my claim for revenue sharing on that video.

Obviously the claim that shouldn’t have happened is very definitely having an effect that AudioMicro1 said would not happen.

This means that once again I have to dispute that claim (and they then have to drop it) before I can submit that video for revenue sharing.

In short, it means that once again they have stolen whatever revenue I might have earned from that video in it’s first couple of days.

Angry as hell, I made this video in response to this crap: Whitelist FAIL http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4W7brpInTMI

I then sent this video to Kevin MacLeod via twitter ( http://twitter.com/kmacleod ) in hopes that he would finally see the truth of what this company is doing in his name and do something to put a stop to this thievery.

In order to insure that he actually sees this, I’m asking everyone to send this video to him, by twitter or whatever other means you can use.

The way AudioMicro1 is doing business is flat out WRONG and it needs to stop.

When they do this to a non-partner it doesn’t cost anybody anything.  Doing it to a partner is costing that partner potential income, however small it might be the partner still has a right to that income.

Please, help me make sure that Kevin Macleod finally understands how these “people” are ruining his good name.

As it is now, in spite of how much I love his music and how well it fits what I’m using it for, I will have to stop using it until this mess is over with.  This means I’ll be spending a large part of the next month or two searching out new music, listening to hundreds, perhaps thousands of titles to find the dozen or two that I need.

[Update Apparently Kevin Macleod is not insensitive to the needs of youtube partners trying to earn a living with their videos.  It seems he’s working on getting things straightened out so that this kind of thing does not continue to be a problem.]

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