Content owners have been up in arms for years about Facebook pages that rip videos from YouTube or other sites and repost them.
The practice is known as “freebooting” and now the social network is taking steps to reduce the amount of pages that do so. Facebook is introducing a new tool that will assist video content owners in protecting their material.
Facebook introduces anti-freebooting Rights Manager tool
Rights Manager uses video matching technology developed by the company over the last 12 months. It will let content owners keep a library of protected clips, safe from “freebooting.”
Content owners can check for other videos that match their own, filtered by time, date or view count. They can also set Rights Manage so that the tool automatically removes infringing material, or they can ask for clips of a certain length or view count to be removed.
Facebook used to take at least a few days to take down offending material, which is a long time in the video world. Now the company is promising immediate action even on the Facebook Live video stream.
Content owners can’t charge re-uploaders
“We check every Facebook Live video stream against files in the Rights Manager reference library, and if a match surfaces, we’ll interrupt that live video,” write product manager Analisa Tamayo Keef and engineering manager Lior Ben-Kereth on the company blog.
“Video publishers and media companies can also provide reference streams of live content so that we can check live video on Facebook against those reference streams in real time.”
Facebook is finally getting up to speed when it comes to protecting copyrighted material. YouTube and Viacom have been engaged in similar programs for many years.
According to Ogilvy and Tubular Labs, 725 of the 1,000 most popular Facebook videos in Q1 were freebooted re-uploads. They accounted for a total of 17 billion views.
Now that Rights Manager has been introduced it will be welcomed by content owners who have previously criticized Facebook for its lack of effort to protect their material. Destin Sandlin, creator of the SmarterEveryDay YouTube channel, is one such user.
Sandlin says that a friend got 5 million views on one video over a four year period. However a freebooted version got 5 million views in four days. “Facebook ran ads on five million views of Flula’s video and made money off it,” he says.
Herein lies one potential problem with Rights Manager, namely that it doesn’t let content owners monetize re-uploads by charging for them. YouTube’s Content ID, on the other hand, lets you bill organizations that re-upload your videos.
As a result there will be no financial reward for keeping track of freebooting on Facebook.