Skip to main content

How to use the YouTube Copyright Match Tool

 The Copyright tab in YouTube Studio gives Partners access to the Copyright Match tool, which lets you see where your videos have been re-uploaded on YouTube. Now all creators should be able to access the copyright tab in YouTube Studio to keep track of your copyright takedown requests.

If your channel is in the YouTube Partner Program, and one of your videos was re-uploaded without your permission, use the Copyright Match tool to easily contact the uploader or submit a DMCA takedown notice. Note that this is not the same as Content ID, and there is no option to monetize those uploads. 

If your channel is not in the YouTube Partner Program you will only have access to a detailed history of previous copyright takedown request and a link to the copyright complaint webform.

Note that there are some limitations:

  • Only the first channel to upload the video to YouTube will see the reports. YouTube has no way to verify that the first uploader is actually the copyright holder.
  • Only full (or mostly full) copies of your videos will be listed. If only a portion of your video, or just the audio track were used in someone else's video, it will not show that.
  • Copies will not be shown if the video has a Content ID claim or if the video is already protected by Content ID.
It does work if your uploaded video is unlisted or private. 

Misuse of the tool can result in loss of feature access or termination of your YouTube Partnership. YouTube specifically prohibits: 
  • Intentional or repeated abuse of the copyright removal process
  • Attempted probing or reverse engineering of the match system
Before you submit a copyright takedown notice, you are expected to:
  • Make sure you have the rights to content in your video
  • Be aware if the other uploader is using the content with permission
  • Allow fair use of your content

How to use the Copyright Match tool

You can access the Copyright Match tool in YouTube Studio on the web. Note that this is only available to channels in the YouTube Partner Program. 

1. Sign in to YouTube and open YouTube Studio (studio.youtube.com)

2. Click the © Copyright option on the left menu

Here's what a Copyright Tab looks like if your channel is in the YouTube Partner Program.

Not all matches infringe copyright. The first video listed in the screenshot is an unlisted video uploaded by my friend Nina Trankova with my permission. The unauthorized uploader names I've blurred.

There are four tabs: Matches, Removal requests, Messages and Archive. 

If your channel is not in the YouTube Partner Program it will show Removal requests only. It also has a link to submit a new removal request.

The Matches Tab: upload details and action options

The Matches tab lets you see videos uploaded to YouTube that match your uploads. It can detect matches even if your video is unlisted. 

Use the Filter option at the top to filter by Total Views or Subscribers. You may not want to bother with videos on channels that don't have any viewers.

Matching videos: The top line is the title of the copy of the video, with a link to that video. In smaller type underneath that is the title and link to your original video. 

Total views:  The number of views the copied video has. Interestingly, most of the copies have almost no views. 

Date:  This is the date the copied video was uploaded, not the date of the original video.

Channel:  This shows the channel name and the number of subscribers it has. The channel name is linked to that channel. (And yes, you should check out Nina's channel.)

% Match: This shows how much of their video matches your video. The tool is designed to only show identical, or nearly identical matches. In my example, some videos as little as 90% of their video matches mine.

Frames: A few frames of the copied video are shown to help you identify it. 

3. To take action on a video, move your cursor over that line on the list. 

Actions you can take include Archive, Request Removal, and Contact. 
I'll archive this listing since the video is used with my permission.

Move to Archive: the file folder icon lets you archive a report. You can find archived matching videos on the Archive tab. 

Request a video removal: click the ! icon to open the video removal request form. This is a legal process, and requires your legal name and address. Learn more.
If a video is uploaded without your permission, and you own all rights to the video, 
you can submit a legal takedown notices. 
The form notes: 
Your physical address and phone number will remain confidential unless requested as part of a lawsuit. If YouTube is required to share any information, we will notify you before doing so. Keep in mind that copyright takedown requests may also be sent by a legal representative, but they'll have to submit the takedown request from their own account. Learn more.
Contact channel: click the envelope icon to send a message to the uploader's channel, asking them to get in touch with you. You can only customize the reply email address in the message. This does not show you the uploader's email address and the message comes from YouTube. 

"Contact channel" message. I'm not going to actually send the message to Nina,
because she is using my video with my permission. 

The message is sent in the uploader's language and comes from YouTube (youtube-team@google.com).
Hi [channel name],

Another YouTube channel noticed their content in a video you uploaded: 
    Your video: [your video title with link]
    Their video: [your video title with link]
    Their channel: [your channel name with link]

If you use another channel's content without permission, they may ask YouTube to remove your video. Removal results in a copyright strike against your account. Learn more. 

The channel has provided its email address in case you'd like to start a conversation: [email you provided]
- The YouTube team
Again, only send this message if the video was uploaded without your permission.  

You can see the messages you have sent on the Messages tab.

Learn more

Comments

data-matched-content-ui-type="image_card_stacked"