Twitter Music & Copyrights Rules: How to Avoid DMCA Takedowns on Twitter in 2021.

Here's everything you need to know to select music for your videos successfully, and how to do so without getting dinged by the Twitter or a DMCA takedown.

Twitter Music & Copyrights Rules: How to Avoid DMCA Takedowns on Twitter in 2021.

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Twitter is an excellent platform for showcasing your video content, as well-placed hashtags or calls for retweets can help expose your message to a broader audience. The music you choose can make or break your Twitter video—but without the proper guardrails in place, it can also result in having your tweet removed, or worse, your account being suspended or permanently banned.

Here’s everything you need to know to pair music to your videos successfully, and how to do so without getting dinged by the Twitter police.

How do I choose the right music for my Twitter Videos?

First and foremost, it’s essential to understand that the video content you create will have more impact when set to music. Select music that not only fits your video aesthetically—but helps convey the overall mood and tone.

For example, take this Tasty video, which went mega-viral on Twitter during the summer of 2020 with over 33 million total views. In the nearly four-minute-long clip, several everyday objects—including a sudsy bar of soap, roll of toilet paper, steak dinner, aloe plant, and so on—are revealed to be elaborately-decorated cakes when cut into with a serrated knife.

At face value, the video has got a hypnotic or almost a dreamlike quality to it. But what prevents it from crossing the line from surreal to downright unsettling is the peppy, upbeat soundtrack that makes the viewer think, “Wow, look at all the cool things you can do with cake!” Whereas watching it without music may lead the viewer to question the very fabric of existence, and what is and is not cake—as the popular meme eventually dictated. You can’t argue that the music doesn’t provide an element of levity.

Choosing the right music can help guide and direct your audience to feel what you want them to feel. However, pairing the wrong music with your content runs the risk of having your video fall flat—or, even worse, distracting the viewer.

Another thing to keep in mind when creating videos for Twitter-specific content is the platform’s constraints. The maximum length of a live video uploaded to Twitter is two minutes and 20 seconds. If using music in this capacity, you’ll want to make sure to choose a song that not only compliments your content—but doesn’t awkwardly or prematurely cut off.

Music that is both tonally appropriate and timed well can make the difference between videos that fly under the radar and those that make people take notice and stop scrolling in their tracks.

What is Twitter’s music policy?

In accordance with Twitter’s rules and policies, users must comply with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which gives copyright holders the ability to file claims to protect owned content. In response to reports of alleged copyright infringement, including but not limited to music, songs, and scores, Twitter reserves the right to remove any content found in violation of the user agreement. Depending on the severity of the violation, or in instances of repeated violations, Twitter may also take further action against your account.

Twitter reserves the right to remove any content found in violation of the user agreement.

If a user believes that the materials reported in the copyright complaints were misidentified, removed in error, or subject to fair use, it is possible to contest the claim with a counter-notification. Another avenue is to seek a retraction of the copyright complaint from the owner of the materials. However, it’s worth noting that simply removing the copyrighted material reported in a complaint will not resolve the complaint, and the user is still subject to action.

What is the punishment for not following Twitter’s music policy?

In addition to removing copyrighted materials, Twitter will take a variety of disciplinary actions against repeat offenders—or particularly egregious violations—on a case-by-case basis, including:

  • Removal of any tweet found in violation of the rules. An email is sent to the user identifying the tweet(s) in violation, notifying them which policies have been violated.
  • Making content less visible on Twitter in search results, replies, and on timelines.
  • Requiring edits. Twitter may also temporarily make the account unavailable until the media is updated to meet compliance standards.
  • Placing an account in read-only mode, limiting the user’s ability to tweet, retweet, or like content until the situation is resolved.
  • Permanently suspending the account and preventing the user from creating new accounts.

Twitter does not take copyright violations lightly. And while the company does maintain a degree of leniency to otherwise “healthy” accounts that make the occasional mistake, that goodwill will only get you so far if your music strategy isn’t well planned out.

How do I legally use music in my Twitter videos?

The most straightforward way to obtain legal permission to use music in your Twitter videos is to get permission directly from the copyright owner by negotiating a license. Merely crediting the owner is not enough to protect yourself from copyright infringement claims—particularly if the song will be used in a commercial capacity.

Unfortunately, this route can also be costly. Some contracts may charge a fee every time a song is played or limit the number of times a song can be played in a video before accruing additional usage fees.

To further complicate matters, with music, there are both sound recording and composition rights to consider. According to the United States Copyright Office, sound recordings and musical compositions are considered two separate works. While music composition encompasses the work of composers, lyricists, and songwriters, sound recording copyrights protect performers, producers, and sound engineers.

Is there an easier way to add the perfect music to my Twitter videos?

If this sounds like an expensive headache, you’re right. Thankfully, there is an easier path to adding tracks to your Twitter videos: royalty free music.

A royalty-free license means you pay for the song once, and have a permanent license to use it. But where do you find royalty-free music? And how do you budget for individual tracks that may vary wildly in price? That’s where Slip.stream can help. We provide easy-to-search royalty free music. In fact, we have the largest royalty free music catalog in the world. And our subscription model allows you to pay a small monthly fee and receive access to unlimited track downloads and use them on any platform you want—including Twitter.

Slip.stream is also built to avoid strikes and paperwork frustrations. All of our tracks are unique to our platform, and none of our tracks are entered into Content ID, preventing DMCA issues. This leaves you more time to do what you do best: create engaging video content.

Sign up for a free trial to get started!