Google has recently released its “How Google Fights Piracy” report (PDF) for 2018, which explains the company’s policies and technology put in place for combating piracy online and to ensure better opportunities for creators. The report revealed that Google invests significantly into its technology, tools, and resources to prevent copyright infringement on its platforms.
As a result, online piracy has been decreasing and the spending on legitimate content has been rising across content categories.
There were several interesting findings in the report. For example, more than $3 billion is the amount that YouTube paid to right holders who have monetized use of their content in other videos through the Content ID rights management tool. And YouTube spent more than $100 million in building Content ID, including staffing and computing resources.
And between October 2017 and September 2018, YouTube paid over $1.8 billion to the music industry in ad revenue alone. Over 3 billion URLs were removed from Google Search for infringing copyright since a submission tool for copyright owners and agents was launched. And Google disapproved over 10 million ads in 2017 that were suspected of copyright infringement or that linked to infringing sites.
Another interesting point from the report is that the music industry earned over $6 billion in total ad revenue from YouTube. “Combined with revenue from our growing subscription service, YouTube Music Premium, and money earned from monetizing fan uploads, YouTube is contributing a meaningful and growing revenue stream for the industry while providing a powerful platform to engage with fans around the world,” says the report.
And YouTube pointed out that the video service is the go-to destination for fans to discover, share, and listen to music they enjoy. For example, Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off” was viewed more than 2.5 billion times, which is over ten times more listens than other leading streaming services like Spotify.
“Today, our services are generating more revenue for creators and rights holders, connecting more people with the content they love, and doing more to fight back against online piracy than ever before,” said YouTube’s Head of Copyright Cedric Manara in a blog post. “We’re proud of the progress this report represents. Through continued innovation and partnership, we’re committed to curtailing infringement by bad actors while empowering the creative communities who make many of the things we love about the internet today.”