RedVilla’s copyright and fair use policies

1. The first rule of copyright

Creators should only upload the products that they have made or that they’re authorized to use. That means that they should not upload products that they didn’t make, or use elements in their products that someone else owns the copyright to, such as videos, music tracks, images, snippets of copyrighted programs, ebooks, or presentations made by other users, without necessary authorizations.

2. What are copyright exceptions?

Copyright exceptions are laws that allow you to reuse someone else’s copyright-protected material without getting their permission, but only under certain circumstances.

In the US, the most widely known copyright exception is fair use. When deciding whether a use is fair, courts look at four factors: the purpose and character of the use, the nature of the copyrighted work, the amount and substantiality of the portion used about the copyrighted work as a whole, and the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work. Some activities that may qualify as fair use include criticism, commentary, and news reporting. Fair use aims to promote freedom of expression.

In some civil law countries, including many in the EU, more limited exceptions are recognized where the reuse must fall within specific categories, instead of having factors that are weighed. The categories set out in Article 17 of the EU Digital Single Market copyright directive are quotation, criticism, review, caricature, parody, and pastiche. These words have their usual meaning in everyday language but are also enacted into law by each member state and interpreted by both national courts and the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). It is also important to consider the context of the use, and the purpose of such copyright exceptions, one of which is to balance creators’ freedom of expression and rightsholders’ copyright.

In some countries, such as Canada, the UK, and Australia, a hybrid concept of fair dealing exists. Courts weigh factors similar to those in fair use, but reuses must fall within specific categories. These categories include quotation (general quotation, and quotation for criticism, review, or news reporting), caricature, parody, and pastiche.

Most countries in the world have signed an international treaty known as the Berne Convention, which allows reuses in specific categories, including for quotation, and news reporting.

While there are some similarities regarding copyright exceptions across the globe, there are still considerable differences between the laws of each country. There’s no one-size-fits-all answer as to whether reuse falls within copyright exceptions, and the courts decide the applicability of such exceptions on a case-by-case basis.

At RedVilla, our mission is to give everyone a voice and show them the world. Copyright exceptions play a key role in furthering this mission by supporting the free flow of ideas and creativity. Therefore, we ask rightsholders to consider the applicability of copyright exceptions before they submit copyright removal requests. We believe that this would strike a balance between respecting the copyright of rightsholders, and creators’ freedom of expression that may be protected by copyright exceptions.

In addition, we build products that empower creators to access, create, and share information like never before. We’ve created a Copyright-free section in the ‘Music’ category for you to discover free high-quality music and sound effects that you can reuse safely. Now with the Images Section, you can add memes and other fair use content, provided that you are permitted to do so. We’re also continuing to build and expand the Creator Ecosystem, which lets creators registered on RedVilla safely use commercial digital content by licensing or sharing their content revenue with rights holders.

A. Resources

3. How can rightsholders make copyright claims?

Everyone has access to RedVilla’s Copyright Management tools, which give rightsholders control of their copyrighted material on RedVilla. We work with rightsholders to match them to appropriate features based on the scale of their copyrighted content on RedVilla and the resources they’ve dedicated to responsibly managing their content online. Our Copyright Management Suite provides several ways for rightsholders to make copyright claims.

A. Claim form

The simplest way to have unauthorized copies of copyrighted content removed is by manually submitting a copyright notification through our DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) Claim form. This tool is best for most users – it is open to everyone.

You can access the claim form on your Vendor Dashboard, or by clicking here

B. Manual Copyrights Management

RedVilla identifies and manually contacts the original copyrighted content owners identifying that their content has been uploaded to the platform.

We give freedom to copyright owners whether they are interested in monetizing the claimed products or, remove them from the platform.

C. Tech

RedVilla is building a digital fingerprinting technology system that will allow rightsholders to upload content that they have exclusive rights to as reference files and then scan products uploaded to RedVilla for matches of that content. When a user uploads a product, RedVilla will scan against the database for matching products. If there is a match, then an action will be taken based on the predefined rules or policies that a content owner sets:

  • Block the products from being viewed. Creators will not receive a copyright strike if the content owner blocks a video.
  • Monetize the video by running ads against it, in some cases sharing revenue with the uploader.
  • Track the video’s viewership statistics.

In most cases, this means that rightsholders don’t need to submit copyright takedowns for these products and instead have the opportunity to monetize and run ads in exchange for the products being live.

D. Resources

4. What action does RedVilla take for copyright infringement?

If a copyright owner submits a valid DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) complaint through our webform, we will take down that product and apply a copyright strike. If a user gets three copyright strikes in 90 days, their account, along with any associated channels, will be terminated. We also have tools to help creators resolve their copyright strikes – including waiting for it to expire after 90 days, requesting a retraction, or submitting a counter-notification.

Content ID works differently. If a match between a reference file and a new upload is found, a ‘claim’ is made. Based on the preference selected by the Copyright owner, we’ll apply a policy to track, monetize, or block, but will not issue a copyright strike.

A. Resources