I'm working on a youtube channel where I want to post only educational material and in my outro I want to use a part of a copyrighted song since the song and the theme of my videos send the same message.

I only use 20 seconds of a over 5 min song, that is less than 7% or about 1/15.

I plan to post a link in the description to the song's official youtube video and from where you can buy the song.

Since this cannot possibly hurt their income in any way (it's more likely that it will increase it) am I correct in saying that I'm covered by fair-use?

  • 1
    FYI 2 seconds worth of infringement of music can cost millions in damages. – user6726 Nov 11 '16 at 0:22

You're breaching copyright. The song sample is not necessary for the educational purpose of your video so you are unlikely to have a legitimate defence of fair use.

Claiming that "this can't possibly hurt their income" is irrelevant, even if it were true, which it is not. Your association with the song may well be seen as a negative, and you are abrogating the copyright holder's authority to (dis)allow such an association.

  • How come you can find tons of copyrighted songs on different youtube channels? Did they get permission or do the owners not care? – Mihai Bratulescu Nov 11 '16 at 0:48
  • YouTube has its own arrangements, which would require a far longer discussion than is possible here. – Nij Nov 11 '16 at 0:52
  • Also, the fact you shouldn't use copyrighted material doesn't stop people from doing so. It is a hard thing to police therefore all the times you hear a copyrighted song on youtube could just be all the ones that that haven't been caught yet – Topher Brink Nov 11 '16 at 11:16
  • You cold ask the copyright holder for permission, and they might give you permission in exchange for money - so not asking for permission and paying them definitely hurts their income. – gnasher729 Nov 11 '16 at 14:29
  • @MihaiBratulescu: Some of those channels are breaching copyright, some of them may have licenses, some of them are directly put up by copyright holders (e.g. the VEVO channels). – sharur Apr 6 '18 at 16:44

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