Lately, I have been seeing the rise of “compilation videos” on YouTube. This may include a few videos on a topic that someone has edited together to create a new video.

My first thought was, “isn’t this breaking copyright law?”

How Is This Legal?

The key here is that the person posting the new video didn’t shoot the clips that he compiled.

I then thought that maybe these people weren’t getting paid for the videos and thus YouTube was looking the other way.

YouTube has gotten really sophisticated in its ability to determine what is copyrighted material and what isn’t, and to help them spread content they created a video category called “Creative Commons.”

What Is Creative Commons?

“Creative Commons” gives anyone the first to use what someone else has created.

For example, I just did a search for one of my favorite authors and found hundreds of videos that I could use:

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Fair Use

However, if you are interested in using a video that isn’t in the “Creative Commons,” I suggest you read up on “YouTube’s Fair Use Policy.”