Get All Access for $5/mo

As Facebook Video Swells, YouTube Creators Cry Foul Over Copyright Infringement Creators say their videos are being pilfered and posted onto Facebook by third parties, which detracts from valuable YouTube views.

By Geoff Weiss

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Popartic | Shutterstock.com

Updated at 2:45 p.m. ET with a statement from Facebook

As Facebook has briskly emerged as YouTube's first forbidding challenger in online video, racking up 4 billion views per day, the social network may have a mounting copyright issue on its hands -- one that smacks of a similar conflict YouTube faced in its early days.

Increasingly, YouTube creators are alleging that their popular videos are being pilfered from the platform and uploaded to Facebook. A new term has even been coined for this practice: "freebooting.'

Because Facebook doesn't offer adequate copyright protection or give creators the ability to monetize their videos just yet, argues George Strompolos, CEO of leading YouTube network Fullscreen, freebooting is detracting from ever-valuable YouTube views.

Related: Analyst: Facebook Native Video Will Thwart YouTube's Throne in a Matter of Months

YouTube is no stranger to copyright issues itself. In 2007, Google was sued by Viacom for copyright infringement to the tune of $1 billion -- a suit it settled out of court last year.

But in 2008, to redress copyright concerns, YouTube developed Content ID, a highly sophisticated system that recognizes duplicated content across its platform and gives creators the opportunity to flag -- or, more cleverly, to monetize -- stolen videos. (YouTube has spent about $60 million to develop Content ID, and it has accounted for $1 billion in payments to creators thus far, or one-third of all of YouTube's monetizable views.)

While Facebook does offer certain copyright protections, the onus falls on creators to hunt down stolen videos and then either report them (as with any other offending Facebook post) or file a copyright claim.

Related: At the NewFronts, 34 Digital Media Giants Divulge Plans for the Future of Online Video

Creators can also send a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) request via snail mail, notes Strompolos, but that can be both time-consuming and costly. "Frankly," he tweeted, "I'm shocked that a rights holder with deep pockets has not sued yet."

"As video continues to grow on Facebook, we're actively exploring further solutions to help IP owners identify and manage potential infringing content, tailored for our unique platform and ecosystem," the company told Entrepreneur in a statement, noting that it would have more to share this summer.

If it ever does hope to eclipse YouTube, however -- which Strompolos fully expects Facebook can -- several things need to happen. First, he believes that Facebook needs to launch its own Content ID system of sorts and offer creators the opportunity to monetize. Additionally, Facebook needs to develop a refined search function so that videos don't get buried under inundating feeds. A dedicated video app and a proliferation of embeds across the web could also help Facebook ultimately vanquish YouTube, Strompolos said.

Related: AT&T, Chernin Group Buy Majority Stake in Leading YouTube Network

Geoff Weiss

Former Staff Writer

Geoff Weiss is a former staff writer at Entrepreneur.com.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Editor's Pick

Business News

Some Car Dealerships Are Selling Cars the Old Fashioned Way Following Massive Cyberattack

CDK software services an estimated 15,000 dealerships in the U.S.

Business News

Apple Is Working on Making Its $3,499 Vision Pro More Affordable — and Mainstream. Here's How.

Apple's product is at least three times more expensive than Meta's version.

Business News

50 Cent Once Sued Taco Bell for $4 Million. Here's How the Fast-Food Giant Got on the Rapper's Bad Side.

The brand suggested that 50 Cent change his name to match its "Why Pay More?" value menu promotion prices. The rapper was not amused.

Thought Leaders

The 8 Taylor Swift Strategies Every Tech Leader Should Apply in 2024

From more progressive intellectual property management to breakthrough community engagement, here's what tech entrepreneurs can learn from Taylor Swift.

Business News

Jack Dorsey Says It Will Soon Be 'Impossible to Tell' if Deepfakes Are Real: 'Like You're in a Simulation'

Dorsey said we will "not know what is real and what is fake" in the next five to 10 years.

Business News

Mark Cuban's Google Account Was Hacked By 'Sophisticated' Bad Actors

The "Shark Tank" star said someone "called and said I had an intruder and spoofed [Google's] recovery methods."