Assert ownership through assets
Before you can earn money on YouTube, you need to set up assets to represent your intellectual property and territorial rights.
Make the most of your assets
An asset is the representation of your intellectual property in the YouTube rights management system. Assets are not the same as videos, which can be uploaded by partners or users and shared on YouTube.com.
Assets are containers for metadata, reference material, ownership information, and policies—all connected with a specific piece of content. YouTube stores critical information in the asset, so you can promote your content, collect revenue, and run reports to drive your business.
Let’s look at an example. A production company might have an asset for a new episode of a TV show. The asset would contain elements such as the title, description, unique ID, date added, and asset type. It would also contain the reference file with the new episode’s audiovisual content. When Content ID identifies a video that matches this asset’s reference material, it generates a claim and applies the corresponding policy.
Select the correct asset type
It’s important to select the correct asset type because some asset types have different properties that impact claims and monetization.
These are the primary asset types in Content ID:
- Music Video - Represents an official music video for a sound recording; embeds a sound recording asset
- Sound Recording - Represents an audio recording; the underlying publishing ownership is represented by all the embedded composition relationships
- Composition Share - Represents an ownership share of a musical composition; multiple Composition Share assets can be embedded within a Sound Recording asset
- TV Episode - Represents an episode from a television show
- Movie - Represents a feature film
- Art Track - Represents a video of a sound recording with still images
- Web - Represents video content not covered by other asset types
We recommend you only select the Web asset type when none of the others apply. If you’re not sure which asset type to choose, read more. (Only music partners may deliver music assets.)
For music partners, note that an Art Track is an automatically generated YouTube version of a sound recording. It consists of the sound recording, album art, and metadata about the recording. The Art Track provides a single label-sanctioned YouTube version of every sound recording, when no official music video is available.
Manage your asset ownership carefully
You specify the ownership for an asset directly in the Content ID interface, or when you deliver it using spreadsheet templates or DDEX (music only). For newly created or existing assets, you can view or edit the ownership information from the Ownership & Policy tab.
Why does this matter? Your policies apply only in countries where you own the asset. For example, if your policy is set to monetize worldwide, but you own the asset in Canada only, YouTube only shows ads on your claimed videos in Canada.
Because ownership affects where and how videos show on YouTube, you should update ownership information whenever it changes, such as when you license content in particular territories. You can specify the territories in which you own the asset, or the territories in which you don't own the asset.
To transfer ownership of assets, you can share a list of asset IDs with the new owner (through an export to CSV or asset report). Next, the new owner can add ownership to the assets and you can remove ownership.
Resolve any ownership conflicts
Nobody likes conflict, whether it’s a two-headed monster arguing about a flower, or a conflict over asset ownership in Content ID. Ownership conflicts arise when multiple parties assert ownership of a single asset in the same territory. (You’ll see ownership conflicts in your Content Manager Dashboard when they arise.)
Let’s say partner Alpha asserts ownership in 27 territories, including Japan. And partner Beta asserts ownership in 12 territories, also including Japan. An ownership conflict exists for Japan. Monetization is suspended for any territory with an ownership conflict, so it’s important to resolve ownership conflicts quickly in order to maximize revenue. Note that music assets (music videos, sound recordings, and compositions) may continue to monetize during conflict.
Here’s how to resolve asset ownership conflicts:
- Go to the Ownership & Policy tab on the asset detail page.
- If you mistakenly asserted ownership for a territory, choose “Remove my ownership” to edit your ownership.
- If you confirmed the accuracy of your ownership, choose “Contact owners” to communicate with the other partners and have them update their ownership.
Music publishing assets are a special case. For musical compositions embedded in Sound Recording assets, conflicts arise when ownership of embedded Composition Shares collectively adds up to over 100%. For example, a Sound Recording asset has embedded Composition Shares from two partners, designated at 50% and 70%, both in the U.S. An ownership conflict would appear on the "Composition" tab of the Sound Recording asset because the ownership on the Composition Shares exceeds 100% in the U.S.
Organize your assets with labels
Partners may wish to use asset labels for easier organization. You can create labels for attributes such as genre, artist, music label, name, and location. You can also use keywords that are helpful for you and others who manage your content. Asset labels are only viewable to the partner who created them.
You can apply up to 30 asset labels to an asset for more granular organization. When you’re searching for assets, you can enter labels and select either “Include all” or “Include any” from the advanced search filter options.
In addition to organizing your asset library, asset labels make it easier to update all assets with a particular label, create campaigns for labeled assets, and view performance reports or analytics. For instance, in the Ads Partner Revenue Report, available monthly, you can filter or group items by the Asset Labels column.