How to upload dance cover on youtube without copyright

Posting Cover Songs on YouTube? What You Need to Know

Songs are protected by copyright, and if you don’t get the right licenses, your YouTube cover song could be removed and you risk losing your entire channel.

Indie bands do it to get exposure. Fans do it to display their devotion. Parents do it to show off their cute kids.

Thousands of times a month, someone posts a cover song on YouTube. And whether the video is a live band performance or a toddler singing from her high chair, most of those cover songs are posted without permission from the song’s copyright holder—meaning they’re infringing someone’s copyright.

If the copyright owner complains, YouTube may remove your video. And if you’re a repeat offender, your YouTube channel—and all its data—may be permanently deleted. In rare instances, you might even be sued for copyright infringement.

To avoid problems, you can obtain licenses that allow you to post the music and an accompanying video.

Here’s what you need to know about music copyrights and the type of licenses you need.

Copyright Laws for Music

Songs are creative works that are protected by copyright law. To copyright songs or copyright music, songwriters need only record their compositions in some tangible way, including on paper, film, tape or digital media. The copyright doesn’t have to be registered and the work doesn’t have to include a copyright symbol. That means that any song that’s been recorded is (or once was) protected by copyright.

The copyright in a musical composition is originally held by its creators—the composer and lyricist—but songwriters typically transfer their copyrights to a music publisher who will help promote the song, administer royalty payments and enforce the copyright.

A song copyright gives its owners a group of rights, including the right to publicly perform the song, to make a derivative work based on the song, to reproduce the song, to distribute copies, and to publicly display the song.

All songs published in 1922 or earlier are in the public domain, meaning they are no longer protected by copyright and can be used by anyone. For all other songs, you can’t legally perform or distribute them on YouTube unless you obtain a license.

Cover Song Licensing

Once a musical work has been published, anyone can record a cover version of the song by obtaining a mechanical license. A song is published when copies or recordings are distributed to the public for sale or rent. A live performance is not publication.

The song’s copyright owner must give you a mechanical license if you pay a royalty fee based on estimated revenue from your cover song. You can obtain a mechanical license through the Harry Fox Agency.

The mechanical license only covers the audio portion of your YouTube cover. To post video along with the song, you’ll need a synchronization license, also called a “sync” license. You must negotiate a sync license with the copyright holder. While copyright owners must grant mechanical licenses, they are not required to give you a sync license, nor is there a set fee for the license.

The good news is that many music publishers have already made agreements with YouTube that allow their songs to be used in exchange for a portion of the ad revenue generated on YouTube. You can find out if there is already an agreement in place for the song you want to use by contacting the music publisher directly.

Consequences of Posting a Cover Song Without a License

The consequences of posting a cover song without a music license depend on the copyright holder.

Some copyright owners don’t mind YouTube covers—they increase a song’s exposure and may introduce a new audience to the songwriters’ or original performer’s music. If songs are posted by fans, a band isn’t likely to risk alienating them by taking down their videos.

Other copyright owners object to unlicensed use of their work. A few years ago, Prince famously had YouTube remove a video that showed a toddler dancing to one of his songs.

If a copyright owner objects, YouTube may remove your video or it may negotiate a deal for the copyright owner to obtain revenue from ads that appear on YouTube. If YouTube removes the video for copyright issues, it will also place a strike against your YouTube channel. After multiple strikes, YouTube will delete your channel, along with the videos, subscribers, likes, views and comments. If you’ve worked hard to cultivate your channel, this can be devastating.

YouTube cover songs are fun and can offer great exposure for up-and-coming musicians. But before you post a cover song, it’s important to understand the licenses you’ll need to do it legally. And it’s wise to get those licenses before you spend a lot of time and money recording your music video.

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What Is Music Copyright? How Does It Affect Dancers?

Due to music copyright infringement, a dance video gets muted. Or taken down. Someone’s account gets a strike. Then their whole account is terminated completely…


While music copyright regulations create somewhat of a crappy conundrum for dancers who want to share their work, you don’t have to feel completely helpless about it.

If you want to keep posting dance videos, then you should study how copyright music works on YouTube.

You can find smart ways to upload and share on YouTube, and know what to do if you run into a copyright infringement issue.

Here are the things you (and all dancers) should know about music copyright, royalty free music, copyright infringement, and more.

What is music copyright?

“Copyright” basically means legal ownership over the things you make.

Copyrighted music belongs to another entity, whether it be the artist, music label, production company, etc.

There are 3 main types of licenses that allow you to legally "own" music:

Master Use License

Master rights are owned by big music companies such as Sony Music, Broadcast Music, Inc., Warner Music Group, EMI, Universal Music Group, etc.

They basically own the original recording file of the song.

Publishing License

Publishers are mostly music labels, such as Def Jam Records. Think of them like book publishers to the song.

They own the rights to the composition and can use the song in their published content. Sometimes Masters are also Publishers, sometimes they’re not.

Music Synchronization License

A Sync License, usually granted by the Publisher, allows the holder to sync the song to some kind of visual output (like a movie, TV show, video game, or advertisement).

***This license is the most relevant to dancers, since we are are syncing choreography to music!!!***

The tricky part about uploading your videos to YouTube is that some licenses don’t get cleared by certain publishers.

When you see that a video is ”blocked in (Country),” – it’s because the publishers don’t have the rights in that country.

You may be starting to realize...

YouTube is not the bad guy!

So many of us are quick to blame the platform itself because that's the place we’re running into the issues. But YouTube is actually your friend! It's trying to help you!

They have an entire team trying to get rights for music so that you can post your concept video – without getting sued.

It matters what song you use

YouTube keeps things fair to music creators by finding the songs that people are using (through *matching), then running ads on those videos.

The money from those ads go to the music creators so they can make some sort of profit off of their content that other people are integrating into their own.

When someone writes a book, they, as well as the publisher, make profit from those who purchase the book.

For music, records, tapes, and CDs worked under a similar model, but with the frequency that music gets used on the internet, it gets difficult to regulate.

That’s why music copyright is such a big deal. Without it, it’d be this free-for-all of someone else’s intellectual property.

You wouldn’t want someone taking your choreography, using it, and making money off of your work without your awareness or involvement, right?

Find other ways of finding music to choreograph to! How To Use SoundCloud To Find Music As A Dancer

*Copy ID Match

When videos are uploaded, they run through a system that basically Shazams it to see if its contents are copyrighted.

If it is (which most songs probably are), the owner of the original content is notified. They can then either choose to block your video or monetize on it through ads.

For example, you probably didn’t pay Rihanna for using “Work” in your video. So YouTube gets money from advertisers to pay her for ya.

This really sucks for dancers

You can dance without music. But most of the time we do use music.

This is why, for so long, dancers had a tough time making money – because choreographers and dancers were always at the mercy of the musicians.

Think about it: at a concert, the headliner is the singer or band. Then there are the backup dancers. “Backup.” Just accompanying the singer.

But now, with YouTube and social media, dancers can self-publish their work and get recognition for it.

We’re pushing ourselves to the forefront by saying “Hey, I created this movement.”

But the song still belongs to someone else. And you could still get in a lot of trouble for it.

How to avoid music copyright infringement

As mentioned, some songs are okay to use, and some are not. It’s important to always CHECK to see if the song you used is going to be cleared before you upload it.

If you know you’re going to make a video out of a certain piece, then check for copyright infringement FIRST.

Content ID, as explained in this video, lets you know exactly what will happen if you use a specific song in your video.

You can stop putting your video or account at risk! Here are a few other ways to avoid running into copyright issues:

Use completely original music

Obviously, if you make a song yourself, you’re the creator and owner of that music – therefore not subject to copyright infringement.

Work with independent artists

This is similar to the first point, but rather than learning how to produce your own music, you can collaborate with artists who create their own original music.

The end product would have been completely self-produced by you and the artist, allowing that content to be uploaded and even monetized.

220 recently worked with SoundCloud artists to create royalty-free dance videos.

Purchase royalty-free music

Royalty-free music is music that you pay for once, and can use it in whatever content after that.

When you buy a song off iTunes, you’re only buying the private rights – meaning you can listen to it wherever you want, but you cannot use it in any media production thereafter.

You can find royalty-free music for your dance videos on a number of different websites.

Music isn’t a tangible item, but it is intellectual property. Taking and using it is considered theft as would taking someone’s wallet.

So when you get a strike, you will, unfortunately, suffer consequences like losing access to certain YouTube features.

If you receive three copyright strikes, then your account and all your videos will be terminated.

You will be unable to create any new accounts under that e-mail address.

It’s important to note exactly why you received a strike, so that you can take steps to contest it, and not repeat the same mistake.

You can find out why going to Creator Studio > Video Manager > Copyright Notices> Copyright Strike. You will be able to find more information on that removal.

To resolve a strike, you'll have to wait the 6 months for it to expire while laying low to not receive any additional strikes in that time.

You also have to complete Copyright School.

Copyright School is actually quite beneficial to watch to prevent any of that from happening.

In addition, you can also get what’s called a “retraction."

This means taking away the strike by asking the person who gave you that strike and asking them to retract their claim.

If your video was removed by a mistake – as in, you really didn’t breach any copyright laws, then you can submit a counter notification.

If becoming a successful choreographer is the goal, knowing how to market yourself is crucial.

And you can’t put your work out there if you have no idea why your videos keep getting taken down!

We hope this helped you content creators understand music copyright laws better.

Have you run into music copyright infringement issues? Got any tips? Leave a comment to share!

Check Music For Copyright Online 🎵 eProves

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Our blog contains articles with case studies of music selection and sound effects for popular YouTube bloggers.

how to download music from youtube
how to check music for copyright for youtube
how to choose music for video without copyright
how to specify the author of music on youtube
check music online: 3 ways to determine AP
youtube music copyright: all about licenses
Copyright Free Music: The Best Ways to Find

Copyright Free YouTube Music: 5 Sites with Free and Permitted YouTube Music

When preparing to post your video on YouTube, you should carefully consider the choice of background music. If it is protected by copyright, then the video may be removed from publication due to their violation. And free music, allowed for use, can be taken from some sites specially designed for this purpose.

Apple in Telegram and YouTube. Subscribe!

It doesn't matter what the purpose of the video is, whether it is to become a viral sensation, or just a video with friends or family members. If the video is open for free public viewing, then the owner of the copyright to the music can always apply and demand that the video be removed. YouTube is just famous for the fact that your favorite videos can suddenly disappear for this reason.

The best option in this situation would be to use music that is free to distribute and not heavily copyrighted. Some sites provide good options for creating a sound background. It is only necessary to add a link to the source of music in the description of the video.

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Free YouTube Music Library

Yes, right in YouTube there is a section where channel owners can choose the right music for their videos.

The YouTube Music Library is a huge archive of sound effects and compositions that you can download for free and use in your videos. All music files are available in high quality MP3 format (320 kbps).

Use of music from the YouTube Music Library is governed by the YouTube Terms of Service.

Music files in the Library are for the exclusive use of users in creating videos. You have the right to use music tracks from the library in the videos you monetize on YouTube.

Please note that when using some tracks from the free music library, you must indicate the author of the composition in the video description (more on this below).

How to download free music from the YouTube Music Library

1. Follow the link to the YouTube Studio using this link.

2. In the menu on the left, select the Music Library section, and then the required tab - "Free Music" or "Sound Effects" .

3. Click the arrow icon to the right of the selected song or sound effect to download the file to your computer.

When do I need to indicate the author of a free composition in the video description?

Attribution: if there is an icon next to the icon for downloading the selected song or sound effect, when you hover over it, a notification appears: "Creative Commons license - attribution required" , then in this case you must indicate the author in the description of the video.

Video monetization: free tracks offered by YouTube Music Library , no rights claimed in Content ID system. This means that it can be used even in the videos you monetize.

If you are asked to confirm your right to commercial use of music from the free library, please provide the exact title of the song, with the obligatory indication that it is from the YouTube Music Library.

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Thematic: free compositions from real artists

Thematic should be of interest to most YouTube video creators. The service offers free compositions from famous artists and musicians. To gain access, you need to register on the site, while this procedure does not require credit card details. After registration, you will see a full thematic music catalog, where you can find both indie songs and works by quite popular artists: Olivia Lane or King Dm. Their songs are perfectly legal to use in your own video.

There are some rules for using the service. Thematic users must provide a specific link and style to embed music in their YouTube or Instagram video. And the created video can only be shown on these two platforms. But if you follow these simple requirements, you can legally get fantastic and professional music for your video.

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WOWA Music Splash

There are only about 20 tracks on this site. They differ in their style and any track can be downloaded for free. However, the site is fundamentally different from others, since all the ringtones are supplied under the Creative Commons Zero (CC0) license.

Copyright issues are complex for most users. But the CC0 license allows you to use the product for free, in personal or commercial rights, edit and change it at your own discretion and not attribution. In fact, this gives the right to do whatever you want with the WOWA downloaded from the site.

It is also not necessary to indicate a link to it in the description of the video on YouTube, as well as include it in any form in the description. The site editors promise to add new tracks periodically. To receive information about their arrival, it is worth subscribing to the mailing list with notifications.

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Icons8 Fugue: Search by Themes, Genres and Moods

This is a fairly well-known resource with free icons and photos. Recently, the service also offers a large selection of free music and sound tracks. Any of them can be downloaded to your computer as a free high quality mp3 file. For an additional fee, you can unlock the ability to work with high-quality wav-files.

The music collection is divided into three categories: themes, genres and moods. Each of them has its own division to help you concretize your choice and quickly find the required composition. Before downloading any track, you can preview it and get the necessary information about it: execution duration, visualization of vibrations, etc.

Present on the site and the search function. But to accurately find the desired composition among the set, it is better to specify the maximum keywords.

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TeknoAXE: one musician, 1500 free songs

For about 10 years now, musician and YouTuber TeknoAXE has been creating new songs, making it possible for anyone on the Internet to enjoy these tracks for free. They are mostly electronic dance music, rock and metal, but there are also quite a few thematic compositions.

Music licensed under CC 4.0. It provides for the placement of the original link and a mention of possible changes made. Compliance with these norms gives access to a collection of 1500 songs, distributed across several genres and moods: drama, horror, comedy, etc. It is worth listening to a few videos, as acquaintances will surely be found among them. The thing is that TeknoAXE music is widely used by YouTube users.

You can follow the musician's new works on his channel on video hosting. Usually TeknoAXE uploads a new track there every week. Using songs from this collection is a good way to find a new sound for a video before it becomes popular.

RELATED: 5 useful web services to measure and compare the size of anything.

Everyone has heard about copyright, but what about copyleft? This product will not be subject to copyright whims, copyright revocations, or disclaimer notices. However, it is still worth learning more about copyright law, as well as how copyrighted materials are used. Even on the Internet, people's rights to an intellectual product are respected. And it’s worth starting with the study of the very concepts of copyright, copyright and copyleft.

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