May 15, 2009

Squonk Productions, Thank You!

I came across this video today, I hadn't even realized that it was uploaded over a month ago. Squonk Productions gave me a very generous shout out in what they advertised as their 'last video entry' on YouTube. I can identify with their frustration about getting noticed on YouTube. I was just mentioning this after noting my 200,000 view milestone. I work darn hard at my edits, went to film school, screen my work at festivals, etc. and still despite all the effort it's taken 2 years now to get a sum that seems even remotely impressive - I haven't seen any of my videos earn substantial individual views on YouTube.

I came across Sqounk's video as I was re-uploading Buick to the Future: Episode 1 due to a copyright issue with the song 'Good Vibrations'. This dispute between YouTube and Warner Music Group is just one more reason to complain about the site - it's started to become more about YouTube partners' individual revenues, royalties for labels, banner ads and popups, than about the free-for-all video hosting site it started out as - or seemingly was just a couple years ago. Who couldn't have seen this coming though, right?

Anyway, the obstacles do keep the path interesting. I'm proud of what I've done so far and truthfully, I never expected it to be an easy climb. It's just nice to be regarded as a deserving 'underdog' after all this time. The fact that anyone is tuning in or reading to begin with is pretty awesome! Thank you Squonk Productions for making my day! And thank you viewers and readers who continue to make this the great experience that it continues to be on a (near)daily basis! Stay tuned.


Anonymous said...

I think Squonk left too soon. I have been thinking about documenting all of this but instead I'll share my story with you.

A while back I had a credit sequence removed b/c I used a song according to youtube called Seether by Veruca Salt. Unfortunately the song was Volcano Girls. For months I tried to contact youtube and UMG for rights to the song and keep the project on youtube. Both groups did not get back to any of the countless emails and phone calls. Not one. However Veruca Salt and management were very quick to get back to me and say that they were sorry but it was out of their hands.

So after 6 months of trying I gave up. Then this week I created an alter-youtube account and posted a video that included a song called Beer Can by Beck. Right away I got an email from youtube. It says that my video has copyrighted material but you don't have to do anything. However the owner, UMG, along with youtube has altered your video. What??? So I check it out and what they did was put an ad on my video for the song with a link to itunes. So UMG who took one of my videos off is now using me as a promotional tool. Smart if they would have done it in the first place.

I think I will repost my video that got taken off and see if it gets the same treatment. If not I'll take down my free publicity video that they decided to make without my permission. I think I should be able to sue youtube for that.

Editing Luke said...

Ya, if you use music from one of the major labels (WMG excluded) they'll put an add on it to pay the royalties to the label.

Because relations between YouTube and WMG have broken down, and they don't have an agreement at the moment, the audio will be blocked.

If you use music from an independent or smaller label, you're still in the clear - for now.