Making YouTube Pay Up

Roger says come together, Paul says "whaaat?" 

Roger:  The whole trip going on with YouTube it’s interesting because you have a company that basically built a platform, a website that has very, very little content development and overhead to deal with as far as that goes.  They created a social site and by allowing people to put material on their site, they basically created background material for their advertisements.   That’s really smart, you’ve got to give it to them, ya know?  On the other side of it, as far as people putting up creative content – stuff that’s being streamed on other sites and all that, it’s really unfair to the artist because (granted, it’s a platform that needs to be used to advertise and to promote), but a lot goes into that, and very, very little comes back from it.  I don’t see any reason why, at the very least, a company the size of YouTube, owned by Google - not broke, doing very well for themselves – can’t at least match standard streaming pay-outs.  While the standard streaming rate is also not great, it’s at least something you can work with.

I don’t know who comes up with the mere fraction of a cent the artist gets paid, or how that works for them (typically .00008¢), but I do think it’s time now that it has become something so large, that they see the give and take.  Yes, you have to put your stuff up there to promote it, but you, the artist also pays to advertise it as well.  By sharing the link, you are inadvertently promoting YouTube as well.  The reason people are looking at the ads on their site is because the artist created all their content for them, and paid for the promotion.  In all fairness, it’s about time they catch up.  Streaming was always really erratic and crazy before, but now it’s somewhat balanced out so I think it’s time YouTube did the same.  I think it’s great to see a lot of high caliber artists that can reach a larger audience start talking about it.   I really hope that for independent artists and people that are just starting out and utilizing that for a promotional machine can all kind of come together and make a little something off their work as well.

Paul:  Who doesn’t like you tube? All those adorable kitty videos!! Guess what? Musicians don’t dig YouTube when it comes to streaming videos for about a sixth of what Spotify and Apple pay artists, so says Nikki Sixx and many other artists, and a few managers as well. Irv Azoff just recently posted a long detailed letter about how the laws need to change so that artists can earn a living off their work, and that includes video streams on YouTube.  Now then how do we make them pay up? I think that first we need to get rid of the safe harbour laws protecting YouTube (Google) so that they at least pay the same royalty rates that Apple and Spotify pay. We could call for a boycott, but that’s just pissin in the wind, nobody’s going to stop using these sites, YouTube, Facebook and the like, we’re hooked. There are some whose daily lives revolve around social media. I really liked what Mr. Sixx had to say about getting the artists involved en mass to effect some change in the system. Perhaps a revolution like United Artists tried to pull off in the movie industry. But reality tells me that the system has always been in the favor of the big company. Record contracts were always in the company’s favor so why should this new system of paying artists be any different? Hey, I like YouTube, dig the funny videos and the ones that make you go “whaaaaat?” But being a musician/singer/song writer it would be unique to get some reasonable pay for our Better Daze videos, and about a zillion old videos of Little Feat that date back to the 70’s of the last century. C’mon YouTube, Googlemeister, if you ain’t sharing, you aint caring!!!


Nikki Sixx launches campaign to get YouTube to pay the same royalties as streaming sites.

Reference Links

Original Sixx story:   http://bit.ly/1NK4hy5

Background story – Both Sides (interesting read)  http://bit.ly/1TWmTgF