The Highlanders have maintained a YouTube channel for quite a few years now, we think it’s an excellent way to promote our band and simply share content others may be interested in viewing. It’s also a good historical video archive for pipe bands and other organizations!
Every now and then we post a new video from a performance or competition and we receive a copyright claim. This is not a big deal for us since we are making no attempt whatsoever to monetize our YouTube channel. And for the record, we believe in and would abide by any legitimate copyright claim. That said, some of the claims are for old and common pipe band tunes such as Scotland the Brave or Green Hills of Tyrol and in a recent case, PM J.K. Cairns. The claimants rarely have anything at all to do with the composition and nothing to do with the pipe band world, in other words, they are copyright trolls.
Why should we care?
As a rule, we contest every single illegitimate copyright claim on our channel. Companies are certainly justified in acquiring other companies for intellectual property and companies should absolutely defend rights they own, but when an organization exists solely to collect patents or copyrights, this behavior should be countered, not condoned or accepted.
In many, if not all cases, the claim has been released. In some such as this example below, the dispute wasn’t even reviewed, what does that suggest about the copyright holder?
If you are managing a pipe band YouTube channel or a YouTube channel for another purpose, don’t use copyrighted material and if you use royalty free background music, follow their guidelines for giving credit.
But, if you receive unwarranted copyright claims, check into when and by whom your music was written and look into the organization claiming rights and if it doesn’t look legitimate, contest it, it only takes a couple of minutes!