April 2, 2009

Comparing Terms of Service at video sites

  • Buffer
  • Buffer

Target group: Cause organizations, nonprofits, NGOs, educators, students, businesses, general public

Drop down to see:
YouTube   Blip.tv   Ourmedia   Internet Archive   Yahoo Video   Revver   Google Video   Metacafe   DoGooder TV

JD LasicaMany organizations and users don’t give a second thought to the rights you forfeit over the use of your content when you post a video to a site like YouTube. Here’s a site-by-site breakdown of what you get — and give up — by consenting to the Terms of Service at some of the major video sites.

YouTube

YouTube’s TOS.

  • Ownership/licensing: You own your work but grant YouTube wide rights to reuse it.
  • Creative Commons licenses?: Not yet permitted. (Creative Commons explained.)
  • Payment to producers?: No.
  • Can you remove your work?: Yes.
  • Can they sell or license your video?: Yes.
  • Can they put ads on or around your video?: Yes.
  • Share your data with third parties?: No, though users may need to opt out.
  • Unsolicited emails?: No, though users may need to opt out.
  • Bottom line: YouTube is the 800-lb. gorilla of video hosting sites. Most people are there to gain visibility rather than income for their works; it remains to be seen how they’ll react if their work is sold to a third party without compensation to them.

Blip.tv

Blip’s TOS.

  • Ownership/licensing: You own your work but grant Blip rights to display and distribute it. “We claim distribution rights only for the purpose of delivering the service while giving the user as much control as possible,” CEO Mike Hudack says. For example, Blip makes the video available as an RSS feed, creates thumbnails and transcodes the video to Flash.
  • CC licenses?: Yes.
  • Payment to producers?: Blip gives video producers a 50-50 revenue split from ads (when users earn at least $25 per quarter).
  • Can you remove your work?: Yes.
  • Can they sell or license your video?: “Our interpretation of our TOS is that it allows us to syndicate the content, cross-post it and put it into RSS feeds, but that it doesn’t allow us to sell the content to third parties without the permission of the creator,” Hudack says.
  • Can they put ads on or around your video?: Yes, on the site, but the creator can opt out of that and would have to opt in to allow ads to be inserted into the video.
  • Share your data with third parties?: The site does not share user data with third parties except if it’s necessary to provide a service to the Blip user, in which case the site holds the third party to the same standards as Blip itself.
  • Unsolicited emails?: The site never sends e-mail to users except in direct relation to an action they’ve taken, and they always have the opportunity for users to opt out of those e-mails.
  • Bottom line: Blip is perhaps the best solution for video producers who want free, reliable hosting for their works in a community setting. See their mission and principles statement.

Ourmedia

Ourmedia’s TOS.

  • Ownership/licensing: You own your work and must decide on a license when you upload it.
  • Creative Commons licenses?: Yes. Ourmedia’s default license is a Creative Commons license, though members may choose from a wide palette of options.
  • Payment to producers?: No.
  • Can you remove your work?: Yes.
  • Can they sell or license your video?: Ourmedia does not do this. The site is restricted by the license chosen by the member.
  • Can they put ads on or around your video?: Yes. The site uses accompanying text ads.
  • Share your data with third parties?: No.
  • Unsolicited emails?: No.
  • Bottom line: With the Internet Archive serving as its media repository, Ourmedia remains a creator-friendly options for grassroots media producers. (But decide for yourself.)

Internet Archive

Archive’s TOS.

  • Ownership/licensing: You own your work and grant the Archive the right to display and preserve it.
  • CC licenses?: Encouraged.
  • Payment to producers?: No.
  • Can you remove your work?: Yes.
  • Can they sell or license your video?: The Archive does not do this.
  • Can they put ads on or around your video?: The Archive does not do this.
  • Share your data with third parties?: “The Collections are made available to researchers and may be … provided to third parties [such as libraries], for any use, without limitation.”
  • Unsolicited emails?: Users consent to being contacted but the Archive has sent out no such surveys in the past two years.
  • Bottom line: An artist-friendly repository that is more about long-term preservation than viewer-friendly video hosting.

Yahoo! Video

Yahoo! Video’s TOS and Additional Terms of Service.

  • Ownership/licensing: You own your video but license to Yahoo! the right to use it in a wide variety of ways.
  • CC licenses?: No. CC licenses are not supported and appear to be inoperable on the commercial site.
  • Payment to producers?: None.
  • Can you remove your work?: Yes. Yahoo has 14 days to take it down.
  • Can they sell or license your video?: Yes.
  • Can they put ads on or around your video?: Yes.
  • Share your data with third parties?: Yes.
  • Unsolicited emails?: Yahoo requires you to allow unsolicited emails, though in practice doesn’t spam you.
  • Bottom line: With millions of viewers and a large community of producers, Yahoo! Video is a good option for those looking for greater visibility, but don’t be surprised if you see your video on partner sites as well.

Revver

Revver’s TOS (Member Agreement).

  • Ownership/licensing: You own your own video and Revver distributes it with an ad attached.
  • CC licenses?: Yes.
  • Payment to producers?: Yes. Users earn 50 percent of revenue generated by ad on their video’s page.
  • Can you remove your work?: Yes.
  • Can they sell or license your video?: No, though the site could use it for promotional purposes.
  • Can they put ads on or around your video?: Revver attaches an ad to the end of your video.
  • Share your data with third parties?: No.
  • Unsolicited emails?: Yes, but you can opt out of emails.
  • Bottom line: Revver is one of the most popular choices for video producers who want to go beyond the hobby stage and earn money for their work.

Google Video

Google Video’s TOS.

  • Ownership/licensing: You own your video but license to Google the right to use it in a wide variety of ways.
  • CC licenses?: No. CC licenses are not supported and appear to be inoperable on the commercial site.
  • Payment to producers?: Yes; Google takes 30 percent of revenues
  • Can you remove your work?: Yes.
  • Can they sell or license your video?: Yes.
  • Can they put ads on or around your video?: Yes.
  • Share your data with third parties?: Yes, under certain circumstances or with user consent.
  • Unsolicited emails?: No.
  • Bottom line: Google Video and sister site YouTube are good ways to get your video out there, assuming you don’t expect much in return.

Metacafe

Metacafe’s TOS.

  • Ownership/licensing: You grant the site a non-exclusive license to use your work in a wide variety of ways.
  • CC licenses?: The site’s TOS makes no mention of CC licenses. But spokesman Mark Day told TechSoup: “We recognize Creative Commons licenses. As far as whether we will post a video with a Creative Commons license, the licenses can all be a little different and sometimes complex. We review each application to Producer Rewards and determine what makes sense in each case.”
  • Payment to producers?: Yes. Producer Rewards program pays poster $5 per every 1,000 video views — one of the site’s major attractions.
  • Can you remove your work?: Yes, unless content has been sub-licensed through Producer Rewards program.
  • Can they sell or license your video?: Only if user participates in Producer Rewards program.
  • Can they put ads on or around your video?: The site uses advertising only sparingly.
  • Share your data with third parties?: Not without user permission.
  • Unsolicited emails?: Not in practice.
  • Bottom line: Metacafe is attractive to video producers who want to earn income for popular, viral videos.


DoGooder TV

DoGooder TV’s TOS: Go to Dogooder.tv and click on Terms of Use.

  • Ownership/licensing: Site is open only to nonprofits, which own their own work.
  • CC licenses?: No. The site requires a non-exclusive license and the content owner can license the content elsewhere under a CC license.
  • Payment to producers?: Allows nonprofits to add a link to their donation page to video.
  • Can you remove your work?: Yes.
  • Can they sell or license your video?: Yes, for the purpose of “getting the nonprofit’s message out to new people,” says a spokesman.
  • Can they put ads on or around your video?: Unclear.
  • Share your data with third parties?: Unclear.
  • Unsolicited emails?: Unclear.
  • Bottom line: A good, free hosting solution for nonprofit organizations.

Note: Since this article was published, Magnify.net is also worth your consideration as a producer-friendly hosting site.

Related

Understanding Video-Sharing Sites’ Terms of Service
TOS comparison chart

Brian Satterfield of Techsoup contributed to this article. Disclosure: J.D. Lasica was the co-founder of Ourmedia.

Updated Aug. 14, 2009. Please comment on, correct or expand upon this article.

Related

Legal terms of video hosting services compared (advancing usability)

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

JD Lasica, founder and former editor of Socialbrite, is co-founder of Cruiseable. Contact JD or follow him on Twitter or Google Plus.

Print Friendly

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 UnportedThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported.