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YouTube vs GEMA

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As you may have noticed or heard, YouTube is currently blocking a selection of videos on YouTube Germany. This is because negotiations between the German collecting society GEMA and YouTube have broken down.

YouTube gives the following explanation:

" Our policy has always been to only monetize music in territories where we have collecting society deals. Therefore, we show no ads in these
countries (red.: Germany)  or even block videos."


YouTube’s contracts with several European collecting societies expired over a year ago, and most have renegotiated with the Google-owned site. For example, Great Britain’s PRS for Music agreed upon a rate of £0.00085 per streamed track.

GEMA, however, is proposing a significantly heftier collection rate of € 0.1278 (£0.11) for every song up to five minutes, and more for longer tracks and those with ads. Up till now the German collecting society has refused to budge on its requirements for a new deal with YouTube. GEMA wants YouTube to account for YouTube’s revenue growth by demanding shares of advertising revenue.

The videos being blocked by Youtube in Germany are randomly selected by GEMA. It does not matter  if the copyright owner of the blocked video is a member of GEMA or any other collecting society.

The negotiations between Belgium collecting society SACEM and YouTube also fell through, but SACEM has not requested YouTube to remove any videos from YouTube Belgium (yet).

Stay tuned for more news...