Will Adding Music to My YouTube Channel Get Me into Trouble?

Peter O’Underfire writes:

I would like to put music on YouTube. However, I don’t want to get in trouble and have my account suspended. Am I allowed to upload videos with music on YouTube, just as long as I don’t monetize it? I would like to have some music on some videos; I feel that some videos would be more entertaining. Please do not tell me to use the music available on YouTube. I just want to know if I’m asking for trouble if I decide to upload videos with music even though I don’t monetize them.

Also, is meta tagging important on YouTube? What I mean is, when I tag, do I use individual words or key phrases and short sentences? Does my video title have anything to do with YouTube rankings? And how about the description box? Does writing a big description with links make my video rank higher?

Finally, does cranking out more videos on YouTube get me noticed more?

How does adding music effect my YouTube Channel?

How does adding music affect my YouTube channel?

It depends on the kind of music that you’re uploading with your video. If the music is under a Creative Commons license or the video is in the Creative Commons system, then you have the right to rebroadcast that music and YouTube’s bots won’t flag it. If they do flag it, you have to show proof that you have the commercial-use rights to play the video, everything in the video, and the music.

The best tip I have is: “if in doubt, leave it out.”

There are, however, hundreds of Creative Commons commercial-use music available from places like incompetech.com Kevin McLeod is a music producer who makes scores for film and TV. He also makes some of his work available for all to use at $0-$60 donation to him, per song, under Creative Commons commercial-use license 3.0. There are a lot of other places and bands who have Creative Commons music that sounds absolutely amazing.

To answer the last part of your question in one sentence, the only thing that gets you ranking better on YouTube is, by my understanding, video views. Well-thought-out video titles and thumbnails are likely to get people interested in your video. Writing a big description may be a waste of time because of how few actually read them. Creative tagging was once the way to go, but because of people gaming and abusing the system, YouTube nuked its usefulness a few months back.

The main point with YouTube is, if you want to do it for fun or as a hobby, then you’ll enjoy it and people will see and hear that you enjoy what you’re doing. If you’re doing it purely for the attention or for the money, then people will sense it and may not be as interested. Plus, when the going gets tough, you’re more likely to stick around if you’re doing it for fun. It really can take you up to two or even three years to get a subscriber base that will start growing and get above 1,000. It’s hard work and you really do have to enjoy it.

I hope this helps.

Image: Music Notes Vector by VectorPortal (via Flickr)

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Chris has consistently expressed his convictions and visions outright, supplying practical information to targeted audiences: media agencies, business owners, technology consumers, software and hardware professionals, et al. He remains a passionate personality in the tech community-at-large. He's a geek.