How to Upload Copyrighted Videos to YouTube

Patricia Smith
5 Min Read

How to Upload Copyrighted Videos to YouTube

It is possible to upload copyrighted videos to YouTube, but there are strict rules regarding how and when you can do this. As the owner of a copyright, it’s important that you are aware of your rights, when and how to exercise them, and how to protect your work in the digital realm.

Before you upload your copyrighted videos to YouTube, it’s important to understand the laws and how they affect you. Copyright laws vary from country to country, so it’s important to research the specifics in your region. Generally, copyright protection extends to original works of authorship, including literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works, such as videos, films, and music. As the copyright owner, you are the only one with the legal right to reproduce, copy, display, or distribute your work.

Get Permission

If you are not the copyright holder of a video, it’s a good idea to get permission from the copyright holder before uploading it to YouTube. This can be done by sending a request to the copyright holder, who will grant permission if they choose. Also, the copyright holder may impose certain restrictions on the way the video is used.

Sign up for YouTube

To upload copyrighted videos to YouTube, you must first create a YouTube account. This can be done quickly and easily by going to the YouTube website and signing up with your email address.

Upload your Video

Once your account is created and verified, you can upload your video with a few simple steps. Simply click the “Upload” button on your homepage and follow the instructions. After you upload your video, you will be able to view it and determine if there are any changes or edits you want to make.

Protect your Work

Once your video is uploaded to YouTube, there are ways to protect your work. YouTube has a copyright infringement feature that allows you to flag and report videos that are infringing on your copyright. Additionally, you can embed digital watermarks into your videos, as well as add descriptive metadata. This will help to ensure your work is protected and easily identified.


Uploading copyrighted videos to YouTube can be a great way to share and promote your work with a wide audience. However, it’s important to understand copyright law, get permission from the copyright holder, and take steps to protect your work. Following these steps will help you ensure your copyrighted videos are used and shared properly.

No, it is not legal to upload copyrighted videos to YouTube without the permission of the copyright holder. The YouTube terms of service state that any copyrighted material that is uploaded without permission is subject to copyright infringement and could result in legal action being taken against the uploader.

3. What penalties might be incurred if copyrighted videos are uploaded to YouTube?

YouTube may issue a copyright strike if one of its users uploads a video that infringes on someone else’s copyright. A copyright strike can result in a wide range of penalties, such as the loss of the ability to do live streams, removal of certain features, or in extreme cases, indefinite suspension of the user’s account.

2. What safeguards should be taken when uploading copyrighted videos to YouTube?

When uploading copyrighted videos to YouTube, content creators should use one of the specialized tools available in the YouTube Video Manager. These tools will allow content owners to provide evidence of their ownership of a copyright on the video, and YouTube will take proactive measures against potential copyright infringement, such as blocking videos or providing information about the copyright owner and their contact details. Additionally, content creators should be mindful of Creative Commons licenses, which may still require attribution or restrict commercial use, as well as the fair use defense which may protect some content from copyright claims.

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