Don’t upload copyrighted videos to YouTube.
What Happens if You Post a Copyrighted Video on YouTube?
The copyrighted video could end up with a Content ID claim. The Content ID is a video fingerprinting system used to detect unauthorized uploading of copyrighted videos already on YouTube.
With a Content ID claim, the copyright owner may block your upload or allow it to remain there. If the video is allowed to remain, then the revenue the video earns from YouTube will go to him or her instead of you. This applies if you’re in the YouTube Partner Program.
So, if your aim is to earn money through YouTube, it’s wise to avoid uploading copyrighted videos to YouTube.
Otherwise, you’ll have to put up with inconveniences like taking down the video or editing out the portion which infringes copyright, if it’s part of a whole video.
You should only upload videos that you’ve shot or have a usage license from the copyright owner.
If you don’t have these options, then your recourse is to use copyright-free videos.
Where to Find Copyright-Free Videos to Upload on YouTube
The quickest way to get copyright-free videos to upload on YouTube is to visit the following resources.
The first thing you want to do when visiting these websites is to ensure that the videos are really copyright-free. Some websites say their videos are copyright-free. Don’t take their word for it. There could be hidden terms that may catch you off-guard later.
So, it pays to read the license terms carefully before you download and use them.
Also, you want to ensure that the copyright-free videos you want to upload to YouTube don’t come with a watermark.
That said, let’s check out the following sites that offer completely free stock footage for personal and commercial use.
Video Library – No Copyright Footage
Is your video project nature-based? Do you need 4K videos for it?
If so, head to Video – Library – No copyright Footage. It’s actually a YouTube Channel.
There are videos of clouds, sunsets, skies, natural forests and more. What’s more, there are drone, time-lapse and double exposure clips.
According to the information on the About page, you can’t sell, reupload as your own creation or as a standalone file any video offered here.
You can only use them as part of a main video project.
You can use them as copyright-free videos to upload on YouTube without a watermark. There are 355 videos (at the time of writing) available for that purpose.
Of course, you can’t download them directly from the YouTube channel. Check the description box for each video and you’ll find a Google Drive link to download the video.
Is attribution needed to use the video? The owner says, “It is desirable, that you mention us in your video description.”
Check out No Copyright Footage.
Many ‘free’ stock video sites offer their assets with a card up their sleeve. There’s bound to be a hidden term or other. Not Pexels.
Pexels doesn’t require you to provide attribution for videos you use from the site.
There’s a wide range of themes offered, but don’t expect anything 4K. That should be understandable because it’s a free site after all.
Videos are provided in the Full HD format which should be sufficient for a YouTube project.
Be informed that all videos are licensed under the CC0 (Creative Commons) which means you can freely reuse the video for personal or commercial projects, without crediting the copyright owner.
If you’re into time-lapse videos as well, Pexels would serve you well.
Clipstill for Cinemagraphs
Clipstill is dedicated to cinemagraphs. Never heard of the term before? They are animated series of photos that play in a loop. Cinemagraphs have the potential to catch the viewer’s eye easily and liven up a video project.
One advantage of using a cinemagraph in your video project is its small file size.
But then not all the cinemagraphs at Clipstill are free. But the free ones are worth downloading.
As long as you don’t use the cinemagraphs as part of a commercial product, you don’t have to provide attribution for the free cinemagraphs you use.
Incidentally, the first menu item on Clipstill is FREE Cinemagraphs.
Cinemagraphs are offered in the MP4 format and the free version is set at 640 x 480.
Your email is required before you can download a free clip. Why email? To send you a receipt for purchasing a clip at $0.00.
Free cinemagraphs are offered every month. So, you would have come back often to check the latest offerings.
Check out the free cinemagraphs at Clipstill.
If you don’t mind crediting the copyright holders of the videos to use their work for free, then you can use the videos in Videovo for your YouTube projects.
Videos are created by community members. So, the quality can be a little uneven. But there are some gems if you look hard enough.
When you search for free videos you would have to apply filters.
Choose royalty-free under license and click on Only free tab before making your search.
But don’t be surprised if you get videos that require you to credit the author of a video despite the filters.
This is not a pleasant experience. However, you can still get copyright-free videos to Upload on YouTube if you’re willing to spend a few minutes sifting through the video search results.
Video footage is offered in Full HD 1080p. Sorry, there’s only a limited collection of 4K videos among the 15,000 free videos offered.
Video formats offered are MP4 and some in Quicktime (MOV).
Check out Videvo.
If you’re the type who doesn’t fancy checking usage licenses of stock video footage, Pixabay would be a delight.
This is one site where all the videos are licensed under CC0. This means they are copy-right free and you don’t have to credit the creators for any video you use from the site.
This is indeed a useful site where you can grab free stock video footage with no watermark.
Among the video assets you can find on their site are motion graphics, HD footage, and 4K videos, all in the MP4 format.
Check out PIxabay to get copyright-free videos to upload on YouTube.
Over at Cover, free videos cover such diverse subjects as Nature, People, Fitness, and even Covid-19.
There are 25 popular categories altogether. Chances are you’ll find the video(s) you’re looking for at Coverr.
Every time you make a search, your results get mixed up with Shutterstock videos. However, they’ll usually be outnumbered by Coverr’s free videos.
So, this shouldn’t be a concern.
Videos can be freely used for commercial and non-commercial projects. There’s no need to ask for permission. There’s also no need to offer credit or provide attribution.
Before you use these copyright-free videos to upload on YouTube, do take note of the terms.
You aren’t allowed to sell or distribute these videos.
Also, you should not use trademarks, logos, or brands that are featured in the videos.
People’s images are also a no-no if they’re recognizable.
For these two categories, you would need permission.
Explore Coverr to discover copyright-free videos.
If you’re looking for free aerial drone videos which you can use as copyright-free videos to upload on YouTube, Videezy has what you need.
Video resolution ranges from Full HD to 4K.
Videos are offered for download in MP4 format.
Do take note of the license though. Most videos are free for personal and commercial use. However, if you’re using it for TV or broadcast (YouTube etc) then you must credit it to Videezy and if you’re using it over the web, there’s an HTML code you must place on your page.
A small token worth giving if you find a free premium-quality video.
Vidlery Free Animation Videos
Do you need copyright-free animation videos to spice up your explainer videos or documentary?
Head to Vidlery where you can download copyright-free videos to upload on YouTube without watermark.
Subjects range from working, traffic, bar, meeting and restaurant, among others.
There are about 20 plus videos (at the time of writing) you can download. Not many. But why complain when you’re getting them free?
Videos are licensed under CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0) ( Public Domain Dedication) applicable worldwide.
When you click on download, you’re offered a Zip file. Unzip it and you get a folder with an MP4 and WebM files.
If you sign up with your email, you’ll get a new animation every wee.
Check out Vidlery.
So, go check out these sites to get copyright-free videos to upload on YouTube and get your video projects moving.