Going viral and Freebooting

A few Sundays ago I was looking at my email and thinking 'wow I do certainly seem to have a lot of activity on my YouTube channel. Like a lot. Loads of new subs and comments'.... wait a minute... something's going on here... And I think I know just what. So I went over to reddit and sure enough my jewel wasp film was climbing r/videos. It got to the very top! Some 3400 upvotes! Which resulted in over 130k views and well over a thousand new subscribers. If you are reading this and you have come here from reddit welcome and thanks for following us! Have a look our latest film if you have not already!

I was really happy to see this because I love reddit. If you don't use reddit you really should. It's amazing. Ever wonder where all these 'viral' videos come from? Reddit. They come from reddit. Things turn up on reddit, then a few days later 9gag, or The Lad Bible or some other content spewing website will pick up on it and then everyone will share it on facebook.

CGP Grey explains the website quite succinctly.

The best part of all this is that it has finally given us a way of interacting with our audience. I was able to answer question about my films, how I was able to get certain shots. How I got into this etc. Also we have an audience now! So our upcoming films will certainly get more views! And lastly it was also nice having some appreciation of the years I have spent practicing this craft. There is however a downside to having a popular video. Something called 'freebooting'.

Freebooting is when some media outlet steals content from YouTube and posts it on facebook claiming it as their own. This happened to me. Back in January RYOT, and offshoot of the Huffington Post stole my jewel wasp footage and re edited into a little film and posted on their facebook page. They did this without my knowledge or permission. I've looked into it and apparently it a a really big problem.

Here is Destin from Smarter Every Day talking about it.

Here is Kurzgesagt talking about the same thing:

So what can I do? Basically nothing. I can fill out a copyright infringement form with facebook and get the video taken down (update it was taken down while I was writing this). But by now the damage is done. They have virtually all the views that they are going to get on that.

So what now? Well I like to think of this as a learning experience. Thankfully I don't have too many really popular videos so it is pretty easy to find where and when my content is being use. One thing I would appreciate from you my would be to let us know if you seen any footage from any of our films.

Lastly on a very separate note this weekend I will be teaching my first Macro Photography Masterclass over at Dr Beynons Bugfarm in Pembrokeshire. I'm really looking forward to it and will hopefully be telling you all about it soon.


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