What happens if you have received a copyright claim or a strike from YouTube?

Copyright infringements are a common matter, but most content creators are not aware of how to keep their video content safe from unwanted copyright claims and takedowns.
Here’s some essential information that can help you run a successful YouTube channel that is cleared from any unpleasant issues.

A Copyright Claim is a routine copyright infringement action that a media rights owner takes on violation of their fair-use policy by any uploader. Whereas, a Copyright Strike is when a rights owner issues a formal request for the removal of such an offensive video from YouTube.

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Copyrights strikes and claims can really take a toll on your channel’s goodwill and if you’re using any other creator’s music, be sure that such claims and strikes could be knocking at your door anytime soon.

YouTube Copyright Claim

So, for background music for your videos, it’s always better to rely on safer options like safe-to-use royalty-free music.

Copyright claims are also called Content ID claims.
To explain them further, if an uploader doesn’t comply with the rights owner’s policy, he faces copyright claim issues. As you’ll see, most of the time owners never allow uploaders to use their media, particularly music, for free. They demand a share of the revenue which ultimately becomes a huge burden for the uploader. So, when uploaders don’t comply with these policies, they get Content ID claims.

Whereas, a Copyright Strike makes it an even darker dream for the uploaders who have limited budgets.

A copyright strike means that the uploader has been declared guilty of stealing other creators’ content by YouTube. It always comes with grave consequences for them, and it’s such a pain in the ass.

However, be it a copyright claim or strike, both hurt your channel. And as you follow, you’ll see it’s quite difficult to avoid such problems when you are depending on other creators’ owned music instead of a permanent solution like royalty-free music.

Copyright protection at YouTube is a solid business. No uploader can just play possum with it. That means, one miscalculation and you’ll be on the hit list.
Via its Copyright Management Support, YouTube works in collaboration with the users to prevent any copyright infringements using the following ways:

Manual claims via DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act)
A media owner may come to know from any source that some YouTube uploader has infringed his copyrighted content, and he may then issue a copyright claim via this forum.

The Copyright Match Tool:
This tool covers YouTube creators. Available to over 1.9 million of them, this tool scans all the content on YouTube and verifies if their copyright-related claims are justified or not. If it finds a claim legit, the claimant then takes further steps.

The Content ID:
It helps YouTube maintain large-scale rights protection for mega players by giving each piece of their content a unique code.
Content ID makes sure that big content creators like digital studios, music enterprises, and collecting societies may produce as much content as they like without having to worry about copyright protection. That means, no matter how much content a certain channel has created, if you happen to use even a bit of it without permission, you’re gonna get caught. There’s no practicality hurdle to it.

The subtle working of Content ID claims:

The rules dictating Content ID claims may be clearly laid out but they are quite lengthy and you have to dedicate a lot of time to go through the details of copyright permissions of every song. And, for any reason, if you don’t comply with the rules, the result could be restrictions over tracking, viewership, or even monetization.

Generally, for new enthusiasts, this problem arises when you happen to use only a tiny part of a song or media snippets that you thought were ‘permitted for use’ in your videos. But, you find yourself falling prey to the orchestrated plan that these creators have carved out for you.

So the question boils down to:
What happens if I have received a Content ID claim against one of my videos?

That’s very simple. You have to resolve the claim with the claimant or dispute it before it finally gets disposed of. The famous YouTube channel Film Booth hands claim receivers their escape manual here.

Whatever, it still takes a lot of effort and mental peace. The process then goes through many strides. When a claim receiver has formally disputed the claim by legally responding to it, the claimant has 30 days to decide about what will be his next move. He can take the following options:

1. If satisfied that the uploader had the necessary permissions, he may release the claim.
Note: such a situation often arises when an uploader has acquired the media license from a third party like Epidemic Sound and the creator of the media doesn’t know about this.

2. If not satisfied, he can reject the response. He can then issue a video takedown request to YouTube. This will be taken as a copyright strike against the uploader’s channel.

3. If he doesn’t respond at all, the claim will expire on its own after 30 days.

Remember: till a video is in dispute, the revenue earned from it is kept in a neutral account. In the end, it gets transferred to the winning party’s account.
So, now, you know that if you get trapped into using media that you don’t have permission to use or if there’s any misunderstanding, you have a problem.

When a rights owner has won a claim, he can decide to:

1. Prohibit the video from going live in certain geographic regions or locations.
For example, the same song may be allowed to feature in videos in Australia but not in India. That’s how it works, and you can’t do anything about it.

2. He can simply remove the video from YouTube.

3. He can monetize it.
He may share some part of the revenue with the uploader or may devour 100% of it. And, you won’t be even allowed to remove the video from your channel if he has turned its monetization on. Yes, once you have landed into the copyright landscape, the problems are just unending.

4. He can negotiate his terms with you.
It can also involve a revenue share for a certain period of time, or it could be anything you definitely won’t be happy doing.

Now, of course, you’ll be asking yourself how on earth you would know about these permissions. Well, I’m going to show you how a common uploader can assess with clarity which popular song is safe to use and which not.

First of all, YouTube has a list that features many songs. This list highlights the permission details regarding their fair use for uploaders. For most of the songs that pop up in your mind, you can check out their Playback and Monetization permissions. You’ll find out that your favorite ones give no such permissions.

There may be some categories of content that don’t qualify for Content ID, and if you have been using media from any of them in your videos, their owners can’t issue copyright claims to you.
However, you can clearly see from here that none of these categories bring you any value in terms of utilizable background music. You won’t be interested in extracting even a snippet that would make a vital part of your brand.
They include:

  • Any music or video that has not been claimed by any creator (this is a rare case where a creator just creates something amazing and then abandons it)
  • Any licensed media without exclusive rights
  • Song remixes, covers, and compilations
  • Recorded video games play
  • Recordings of a software’s internal environment
  • Movie trailers
  • Live Performance recordings

However, excerpts from these categories can definitely help you with short YouTube videos. The following video explains well the revenue sharing scenario in that case.

Copyright strikes are manually made.
You have to dispute them.

Receiving a copyright strike means that now YouTube thinks that your channel has lost good standing. Right from the first strike, YouTube tends to penalize you.
It could be some kind of restrictions like a ban on live streaming, or limited monetization for an unspecified period of time.

When they take down the video, they notify you. Now you can either accept the verdict or issue a counter-notice to the claimant. But this doesn’t work out as far as you know that you have infringed the policy even by a little margin.

As I keep reiterating, it takes a long period of 90 days for the first copyright strike to expire after you have committed yourself to your back-to-school journey. Yes, you’ll have to take a prescribed course in YouTube’s Copyright School before you resume your regular business

OK, the danger level just turned up a notch.

Second Strike:
Upon receiving a second copyright strike before the first strike has even expired, you have to wait for another 90 days until the second strike has expired. Until this period ends, your channel remains on the watch list and you have very limited decision options.

Third Strike:
Next up, there’s an even cringier scenario.
There’s the third one. The first two strikes haven’t yet been resolved. Well, the devil’s really after you.
This time, YouTube will automatically terminate your channel and remove all the videos from it. That said, you will be banned from creating any new channels.
In the worst case, the punishment can go even harder. You may also end up facing severe legal consequences as you may have to dispute the matter in a court of law as well. But, unfortunately the bad news doesn’t end here.

In case you lose the dispute, you could have to pay a hefty amount of money to the winning party as compensation.

You have to be 100% sure that what certain use of a particular song is permitted and what is not. As far as monetization is concerned, consider it a straight NO.
As you have just noticed that the media types that don’t fall under Content ID permissions aren’t really usable at all, you can tell yourself that the copyrighted music of your choice can’t just be used for monetization.

Exception: Only music covers can be monetized but you have to share half the revenue with the owner of the original song, but again, your need is some captivating background music.

For any popular music, recent music, or any song that you have been craving to include in your videos, you won’t be permitted monetization. Your video will get blocked, muted, or in the worst circumstances, you may get a copyright strike as well.

Another issue: Any song that’s available for use today can be copyright-protected tomorrow. If you are using it happily now, copyright takedown notices may be knocking at your door very soon.

A copyright owner may abruptly change their policy. Oftentimes, they change their policy overnight and the media users are not aware of that. This is usually a deliberate move by the copyright owners to earn some leverage for themselves. Having found you ‘violating’ their policy, they issue copyright claims to you.

Then you get blackmailed by them and they demand a huge chunk of money from you in exchange for a withdrawn claim. It happens a lot, see some examples here.

Again, to ask ourselves why on earth do we use other creators’ content at all? And if we have to, how can we make sure our channel is safe?

Only the songs that have been featured in long-running YouTube videos can be trusted with such use. And these videos should also not come only from established channels or only a few similar categories.

Do whatever, the best solution here is none other than royalty-free music for your YouTube videos. It’s safe, it’s available in a huge variety, and on top of that, it’s Foximusic’s forte.

The answer is a partial YES.

As per YouTube policy, if you have received a copyright claim/strike on your channel, this reason alone will not get you a monetization rejection. However, copyright infringement is a serious offense and it may get your channel a negative standing with YouTube’s monetization algorithm. Maybe they’ll refuse monetization in the near future.

Actually, what happens is…
If your application for the YouTube Partner Program has been rejected, YouTube doesn’t explain what factor has led to the rejection. They only tell you what policies have been violated. So, you remain unsure as to whether it’s copyright infringement that has led to rejection.

As you can see, to turn the monetization on, you have to comply with different sets of Google and YouTube policies. Not adhering to any of them may cause a refusal from YouTube Partner Program. Again, we never know what would make their algorithm tick.
Another question arises here…

When there is no YouTube copyright claim/strike on my channel, is it automatically accepted into the YouTube Partner Program?

The answer is NO.
Complying with all the community guidelines is essential. Copyright policy is just a part of them.

Why Foximusic’s license is 100% YouTube safe

In order to avoid any issues with video claims and lost magnetization revenue on your YouTube channel, you simply need to buy a proper license for your video’s soundtrack.

Here comes Foximusic with its exclusive music catalog that fit a wide music styles, with a clear music license terms that could help you in running your business like a pro.

There’s an extensive variety of songs for you to choose from. There are different licensing packages depending on your needs. No fake promises. No hidden fees!

Take, for example, our best-selling Standard Package. It gives you the comfort of zero anxiety about relicensing. You get to use licensed songs in unlimited videos on unlimited channels & unlimited platforms. Moreover, you can feature these songs in any commercial ads well. There’s no restriction regarding video types as well. Monetize or do whatever, there’s nothing stopping you. And get all of that for a negligible price of only $14.90 per song if you purchase a bundle of 10 tracks.

For your fulfillment, everything is packed in a black & white music license contract, with no hidden fees or conditions that might bother you later.

Start your journey with our hand-curated playlists here – http://www.foximusic.com/playlists/

Wrapping it Up:

So to wrap it up, the crux of the discussion is that you don’t want to attract any copyright infringement consequences to your channel. A copyright claim may come and go without giving you short-term harm but it really affects your channel’s standing as YouTube now starts scrutinizing you even harder.

In the case of a strike, you may also end up losing your chance of monetization, and for your personal brand, the consequences could be even dreadful. The trademark YOU may also have to suffer. So you should try to stick to the safest possible options especially regarding background music.

Foximusic and other legit royalty free music libraries bring home this luxury for you. If you like our music, take advantage of our great value-for-money offers you get here, to help you cruise your YouTube journey on the safe side and most importantly, for the long run.


This track is watermarked by Foximusic and should only be used for testing and previewing purposes. Using this in projects is not allowed.


Free Lincense with Attribution

You can use this music for free in your online videos (Youtube, Facebook, Instagram)

You just have to give attribution link as follows:
Music by: https://www.foximusic.com