What does Youtube Music - for content creators & musicians

I got mail yesterday

Yesterday in the evening, I received an email from my digital music distribution service. It said, to sum up, that I can have through them my music featured on YouTube music, and collect royalties even if my YouTube channel is not eligible for such a collect. But I don't see the point since...

All my music is already available on YouTube music

...because I always put a "music only" video on YouTube each time I finish a new song, and, YouTube Music automatically imports all the YouTube content which can be defined as "music".

The Youtube Music App, Youtube Premium paid subscription and the Youtube Music desktop app

There is a mobile app for Youtube Music, with an optional subscription called "Youtube Music premium".

The subscription allows to

  • Listen to music without ads
  • Listen to music with the app running in the background
  • Download music for offline playback, for 30 days
There is also a desktop (web) app that can be found at https://music.youtube.com

The question of money

While my music distribution states in its email that music uploaded through them will be eligible for getting subscription royalties even if my Youtube channel isn't, I found nowhere in the Google Help Center any indication that my music which is already on YouTube Music will make me earn money. As far as I understand I still have to get 1000 subscribers and 4000 hours viewed in the past 365 days for my "old Youtube" channel to be able to get revenue shares from Youtube Music subscriptions.

What will I do

I will do... Nothing. I only have less than 10% of my music uploaded through the digital distribution service. Because uploading there is extremely time consuming and I prefer à tout le moins record music. Also, I don't see the point of republishing there something that is already there.

I'll just wait for a move from YouTube Music, in the hope they will become more fair with musicians and start sharing revenues without such high criteria.

About the author

Nicolas "Shangri-l" Chartoire is one of the musicians of the free music scene. His most notable projects include Me In The Bath (noisepop/rock) and Still Living Creature (electro). He published dozens of releases over years. He's also the maintainer of his own netlabel, Crem Road records and a volunteer in the Musique Libre volunteer organization, and he likes to talk about himself at the third person.