I do a lot of video editing where I use some music as background during the pre-roll or post-roll. Since I started posting in 2019, I’ve had an annual subscription to Envato Elements at a cost of around $200US/year.

Over the last few years I’ve had a few copyright claims on YouTube, and in every case I’ve submitted Envato’s License File and the copyright claim has been satisfactorily resolved.

Today I received my first copyright claim from Vimeo, and the outcome was equally swift – but rather than accepting my documented proof of the right to use the music, my video was force into “Private” status, never to be seen by the public again.

Now, I could re-edit the video, replace the music, and re-upload. I like that you can replace one video with another, an option not available on YouTube (maybe for a price). But if I’m going to replace the music with another track from Envato, I’m concerned that I’ll get another copyright claim, and in that vicious circle of “replace the video, get another copyright claim”, Vimeo will cancel my service.

With Vimeo, once you’ve appealed and been denied, you’re done. Their approach after that is that you go to the copyright claimant. The problem is that you aren’t told who the claimant is. This is all you get:

Fortunately for me, all my music tracks have come from Envato – so far. (If I don’t get any support from them on this, that’s likely to change.) But including photos, videos, music, and other downloads, there have been hundreds of downloads in the 5 or so years, during which I’ve paid over $1,000 in fees.

Look, I know I’ve been getting a good deal, and their selection isn’t bad (but it’s not “top notch”). I don’t have to have “just exactly the perfect picture” or video or music track or graphic element. I’ll settle for 90% close enough. But I can’t be “looking back over my shoulder” every time I use something, wondering if this is the time I’ll get kicked out of some hosting site.

Granted, this is my first strike at Vimeo, and my first denial. With some luck, this will eventually get resolved. I’ll keep you posted! And if you have a similar experience, please let me know.

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