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#3070952 11/19/20 11:48 PM
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Yesterday, YouTube brought into effect a set of changes to its Terms of Service. I am one of the millions of people with YouTube stations who clicked right by it without paying attention, for which I hang my head in shame.

Having had it brought back to my attention by a colleague, I went back and read those changes, including going to the actual page for YouTube's Official Terms of Service, and what I read there has made me kind of nauseous.

Cut and pasted for your delectation:

Right to Monetize

You grant to YouTube the right to monetize your Content on the Service (and such monetization may include displaying ads on or within Content or charging users a fee for access). This Agreement does not entitle you to any payments. Starting November 18, 2020, any payments you may be entitled to receive from YouTube under any other agreement between you and YouTube (including for example payments under the YouTube Partner Program, Channel memberships or Super Chat) will be treated as royalties. If required by law, Google will withhold taxes from such payments.


More specifically, from the announcement email:

YouTube's right to monetize: YouTube has the right to monetize all content on the platform and ads may appear on videos from channels not in the YouTube Partner Program.

What does this mean? YouTube is exerting the right to put ads on anyone's videos -- any ads it wishes, wherever it wants. Creators can't decide if they get ads put in or not; channels designed or intended to never be monetized will still risk having ads put in them, even if non-monetization was chosen specifically to avoid having ads; YouTube decides which ads will run, be they for car insurance, testosterone supplements, downmarket drones, or fast food; and regardless of when, how, or how much ads run, the creator will not be paid anything unless they join the YPP, for which they can't even qualify until they hit a certain number of subscribers and views, which are always pushed down by the presence of ads.

"We give you all this storage space for free. If you bring eyeballs here, we have the right to put ads in front of them because it's OUR storage space. Got a problem with that? Leave."

Has anyone been following this more closely than I've been able to? And if you HAVE had a chance to get into it in detail, have I missed something? I'm looking at having to start every video with a disclaimer that any ads shown were put there by YouTube, that they don't reflect my personal or professional beliefs and that I don't get paid for them.

ScheiƟ!


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You've summarized the situation accurately.

Furthermore, they've changed the terms for free photos starting in June 2021.

Google Play was killed and I can't seem to stream my own music, although my music does show up on the desktop app with local storage. I presume they don't really store your music, they have a ton of music on servers that exists in the real world, and when you ask for that music, that's what gets served up. So now I use an old Android phone as a hip iPod for my music, and that of others whose music hasn't been released through mainstream channels.

On the one hand, it's their servers. If people are uploading billions of things and expect to do so for free, that's not realistic. OTOH they're not exactly hurting - 2019 revenue was $160,740,000,000, mostly from - wait for it - ads. They also keep raising the prices on ads and placement. Still. I use up space on their service from my music channel, and they get nothing from it except for people visiting their site and clicking on things. And I bet some people abuse the fact that it's free, and upload all their photos...including ones they'll never look at again, ones that are blurry and weird, etc.

All's fair in love, war, and apparently, making money. They want to make more of it. I'm sure their electricity and storage bill is astronomical, and so far, I haven't paid anything for them to host my videos...so I'm not really surprised.

BTW - Google is also working hard to take over the music space from Spotify and Apple Music. Stay tuned.

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I saw that too. F*c* them.

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I have gradually dropped or refused to take up with multiple companies whose "Terms of Service" or draconian changes like YouTube's became so hostile, the product's value eluded me. Its daunting to see how casually many will pierce the heart of why you were there to begin with. The arrogance is, even these days, astounding. Many all but demand blood and some even want to permanently tap a vein. YT's new action will probably make services such as Vimeo very happy, unless they choose to emulate it. I will pragmatically modify or change where needed, but not if some rancid CEO drops an anvil on my foot, Just Because.

I have no illusions about the serious cost of running even a small business, much less a mega-sized one, but where's the line between making a decent profit and just being a festering glob of grinding greed? There's no natural brake that says "Okay, you've made enough money, back off a bit." Capitalism has the built-in stressor of being outstanding and horrific at the same time, since the free market is why we have synths, higher standards of living and the freedom to eat up resources arguing the point on here. Lord Elpus. crazy


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As someone who finds a ton of great content on YouTube - all for free - I've been a tad ("a tad" is 33% of "somewhat") peeved to have to wait for ads (typically I can click through after 5-10 seconds) before watching the stuff I used to get straight away, ad-free.

But to be more than a tad peeved, I think would be rather entitled of me.

So as a consumer...YT is what used to be TV, except infinitely better. I can live with ads.

If I had my own YT channel, I'd be more than a tad peeved. But at least it's happening across the board apparently.

It used to be the way to get rich was to add convenience to a commodity. Now it seems the way to do it is get a couple of billion people hooked on a free service, then unilaterally start exploiting the situation with a dink here, a doink there. Which adds up to $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$.

I think we can all live with the ads, at least in their present incarnation. YT will not listen to complaints, but will watch the bottom line. The successful channels can't afford to just up and leave, and perhaps YT is thinking this tactic will make money while simultaneously weeding out untold numbers of channels with immaterial levels of popularity. Win Win for Mr Big. And makes all us little people feel just that much littler.

nat

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I use TuneIn.com sporadically. They have a premium service for $9.99 a month that eliminates ads. But, I don't use it enough to where ads are a hassle. So, I'm willing to put up with ads.

I really don't want to have to depend on corporate largesse. Some facts from Macrotrends.net regarding Alphabet (i.e., Google):

Alphabet net income for the quarter ending September 30, 2020 was $11.247B, a 59.13% increase year-over-year.
Alphabet net income for the twelve months ending September 30, 2020 was $35.713B, a 9.48% increase year-over-year.
Alphabet annual net income for 2019 was $34.343B, a 11.74% increase from 2018.
Alphabet annual net income for 2018 was $30.736B, a 142.74% increase from 2017.
Alphabet annual net income for 2017 was $12.662B, a 34.99% decline from 2016.

So it seems that in 2017, they got concerned by the 35% decline compared to 2016. Then in 2018, hey - pop the champagne bottles! Way better than 2017!!

Then in 2019, I bet the beat-counters started worrying again. Now, an 11.74% increase is nothing to sneeze at, but a lot of real estate is increasing by more than that year over year.

And then in 2020, the YOY increase was less than 10%. So...bring on the ads!

Do I agree that growth should be everything? No. Do I agree that's the way the system is set up? Yes.

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True story: At one point I was having dinner with the people from Normal Lear's Act III company, which had bought Mix Magazine, EM, Mix Bookshelf, etc. They wanted to get rid of Mix Bookshelf. I couldn't understand why - it was making about 10-12% per year, and employed 15 people. The answer was "because we could put our money somewhere else, and make 20%."

I said "But you could make 400% by dealing cocaine and pimping hookers."

I became very unpopular, very fast smile

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That's funny Craig!!!

There are other ways to go about this thing. I haven't done any of it, not as an attempt to monetize. Yet.
Mostly I prefer to remain in hiding, which will never get me anywhere but is quite peaceful.

Meanwhile, gotta give props to Jenna Marbles for making the most of it while it lasted. If she didn't blow all that money she should be set for life now.
That way of monetizing YouTube is probably over.


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I suppose I'll watch and see what's happening for a while. Getting into YPP at least gives control over a lot of this, but you have to get into YPP first. Sigh.


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YouTube has been an annoying place for sometime. I rarely go there. I will not host anything important to me there. I would not build a business dependent on their platform, but it might still have limited promotional value in the context of a larger vision. But anyone making $$ under the generosity of their terms of service is going to see revenue trend in one direction only. Once you have everyone watching, then they can only grow by taking a bigger share of the profit. Which they will do. Like Uber did. Whoever controls the platform owns the business. Their franchisees work increasingly hard to build a community they don't own and who they can't reach off platform. The smart ones all monetize off platform and put a fraction of their content on YouTube as an ad. But lots of people think YouTube is a "right" - they will be very disappointed over the next few years.

I just got an email with 25% off any Vimeo plan. I'll be going that direction for video hosting. I'll pay to host video, and then there are no ads. As a creator, the ads are just terrible.... they are random, and then put in totally random places, completely interrupting the flow. Even TV puts them at fixed intervals. In a musical context, it is just horrible - right in the middle of something.

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Originally Posted by Nathanael_I
As a creator, the ads are just terrible.... they are random, and then put in totally random places, completely interrupting the flow. Even TV puts them at fixed intervals. In a musical context, it is just horrible - right in the middle of something.

I completely agree with you

YouTube ads are incredibly annoying!

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I knew going in to YouTube that I wasn't doing it for money. If one is though this is super annoying...even a someone who really doesn't care about making money off of YouTube, that move is really tacky.


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It seems the new trend will be to use YouTube and Fakebook to drive traffic to Vimeo and Patreon.


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My experience is that some videos get ads, some don't.

Is it only YT videos originally posted after some date get the ads??

I just watched Bjork's Army of Me - no ads. Obviously an oldie by now.

Then Chris Stapleton's Starting Over official video posted up Sept 18 - a Capitol One ad at the start, but no ads after that. Video starts after ad - no click through offered.

The Springsteen's Letter to You - a couple of months ago posted up. There was a temporary banner across the bottom of the screen pedaling MSI computer stuff, but no actual ads in video form. Now that's still irritating - having some banner ad plastered right on top of the video content....

We "go to church" nowadays via YT - our local church streams the service every Sunday - no ads during this morning's stream...compulsory commercial ads in that context that would, well, not be considered a blessed event.

Skip and Shannon Undisputed - "video starts after ad" is all.

Austin City Limits featuring The Mavericks playing "Recuerdos" from 3 days ago - no ads whatever. BTW - I highly recommend watching the full episode of The Mavericks on ACL via PBS. Raul Malo fronting - what a voice. A real pro band working it - two electric guitars, piano, trumpet, sax, accordion, latin percussion, backup singer, the whole enchilda, very very tasty!

Gillian Welch "Cowboy Rides Away" posted up in the last month. An opening ad that can be clicked through (but this was an amusing ad so I didn't skip to the video). No other intrusions.

Some YT channel titled "OkieDeadhead" posted up a 13-minute acoustic demo of a solo Bob Weir playing/singing his "Weather Report Suite" from 1974 - no ads whatever - date of posting Nov 14 just passed. A real demo, mistakes and all, which is kind of refreshing, like having the dude on the back porch, swapping songs, showing some stuff in progress. Not a Dead fan particularly, but I liked this.

Some YT channels that I watch fairly regularly - like That Pedal Show, Warren Huart, Adam Neely, etc....some had a starter ad and even one or two ads in midstream of the video...now that is quite rude....

Does anyone understand how YT works now??

I think I have YouTube Premium but I don't recall paying anything for it....was it because we bought a Roku about a year ago??

I'm so confused!!!!

nat

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I am not claiming to know one single thing but if I were an advertiser and paying for placement, I would want to choose placement that would be effective for my products/services.

For instance, that means I might not want my ads for adult diapers plastered all over kids cartoons, just for one example.

And yes, I HATE banners almost more than crappy video ads. What I really hate is the over compressed audio for most commercials, if you are listening to something subtle and beautiful it can blast you out of your tree.
Since I don't have to use YouTube, mostly I don't.

I can see it being part of a multi-social media strategy to drive viewers to other places, like Vimeo and Patreon.


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There are objections to YT as expressed here, and objections from an artist perspective as voiced by Don Henley.

It seems there could be a place for an artist-oriented music video sharing platform which would be oriented towards the needs of the artists (content providers) instead of others.
Something akin to what United Artists did for movie actors (my reference to UA is based on the reason for its founding and its early history).

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YT posted a polling question about "customer experience with ads" as I was watching various YTs yesterday evening. So...maybe they are listening...a little??

And yeah, a "by musicians for musicians" music sharing platform would be great. But musicians never seem to get it together in any way to push back at the Big Outfit streaming (or any other kind of music-related) service. We're not joiners, not business-savvy, by and large, I don't think.

nat

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Originally Posted by Nowarezman
YT posted a polling question about "customer experience with ads" as I was watching various YTs yesterday evening. So...maybe they are listening...a little??

And yeah, a "by musicians for musicians" music sharing platform would be great. But musicians never seem to get it together in any way to push back at the Big Outfit streaming (or any other kind of music-related) service. We're not joiners, not business-savvy, by and large, I don't think.

nat

Renting server space could be a financial barrier. YT may be preparing an alternate platform themselves, Google owns them and pockets are deep.

It's also possible they've found that the endless barrage of copyright lawsuits is not worth dealing with and they want some people to go away. Taken as a whole, musicians seem to be shameless copyright violators (not excluding myself here!). ASCAP and BMI may be putting the pressure on, just for one. They've got to be hurting with this "gigless" economy. If I owned a club and there was no music I would not pay them a dime. One of their primary income streams has shrunk dramatically if not disappeared entirely.


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Originally Posted by harmonizer
There are objections to YT as expressed here, and objections from an artist perspective as voiced by Don Henley.

It seems there could be a place for an artist-oriented music video sharing platform which would be oriented towards the needs of the artists (content providers) instead of others.
Something akin to what United Artists did for movie actors (my reference to UA is based on the reason for its founding and its early history).

Wouldn't Bandcamp qualify for that description?

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Originally Posted by Anderton
Wouldn't Bandcamp qualify for that description?

I tried Soundcloud for a while - had a short period of interests with friends and family and a smattering of others, but it just petered out. I haven't graduated to making videos yet - and I ain't pretty smile

So I got discouraged trying to post my material anywhere - is Bandcamp the best option now? Is it a big deal? Do non-musicians go to it for simple streaming? Does it attract major acts?? Is it friendly to the littlest guys like me??

I still write songs, record, never-ceasing, but it all just sits in my computer.

nat

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Originally Posted by Nowarezman
I tried Soundcloud for a while - had a short period of interests with friends and family and a smattering of others, but it just petered out. I haven't graduated to making videos yet - and I ain't pretty smile

I'm usually not in my videos, it's all about public domain images, lyric videos, and special effects. I think my next album will really show what you can do with a) no camera, b) no budget, and c) a non-buff dude smile

Quote
I still write songs, record, never-ceasing, but it all just sits in my computer.

It's not doing anyone any good there, right?

I decided to post my material on YouTube. I have about 1700 subscribers and my videos have hundreds, thousands, and (sometimes) over ten thousand views - not millions. Not enough to monetize. Nowhere near what gamers get.

And I don't care! I make my music for me, because I love to make music. If 1700 other people like it as well, that's awesome. I get plenty of favorable comments. I'll never make money from posting stuff on YouTube. But, at least for me, it gives credibility to my articles, books, etc. because people can listen to what I do and at least think "okay, the dude knows what he's talking about, even if it isn't my kind of music."

As I wrote in one of my latest songs, "There's no joy in a life led secretly." Get your stuff out there! Whether it gets 1 click or 1,000,000 clicks isn't really the point.

I for one would interested in hearing what you're up to these days...that's one subscriber right there.

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[/quote]
It's not doing anyone any good there, right?


As I wrote in one of my latest songs, "There's no joy in a life led secretly." Get your stuff out there! Whether it gets 1 click or 1,000,000 clicks isn't really the point.

I for one would interested in hearing what you're up to these days...that's one subscriber right there.[/quote]


Well, thanks, Craig, sincerely. I'll check out YT and the hows to and whats thises and thats....

nat

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Originally Posted by Nowarezman
Well, thanks, Craig, sincerely. I'll check out YT and the hows to and whats thises and thats....

nat

It's probably worth noting that during a significant portion of my life, between recording, production, and touring, I made a significant amount of money from music. But I have to say I've never had more fun doing music than I am now, with the exception of the time spent playing with Dr. Walker over in Europe - which was just as much fun.

It's great to have no record companies, executive producers, focus groups, alcoholic country and western singers making a comeback, or other "business" aspects breathing down my neck. I can do whatever I want, whenever I want, however I want. Yeah, it would be great to get bucks for it because then I could do it more : ) But I'm not sure it's worth giving up the freedom.

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My church uses YouTube (and a couple of other platforms) for live streaming as well; I believe it's because the church, through a third-party video distribution service, is already paying YouTube for the live stream time; thus, no ad needed for YT to make money from it.


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