YouTube now has 100 million Premium and Music subscribers, including free trials.

That represents an increase of around 20 million customers since 2022. Content ID claims are also up 25% year on year, with rights holders opting to profit rather than remove user-generated content (UGC).

YouTube claims it paid more than $70 billion to creators, artists, and media firms in the three years leading up to 2024. That’s up $20 billion from the $50 billion+ number reported in 2022, demonstrating how rights holders are choosing to monetise content.

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As of January 2024, YouTube has more than 100 million Premium and Music subscribers in 100 countries. It also boasts that its Content ID service, its most sophisticated rights management tool offered to movie studios, record labels, and collecting societies, has paid out more than $9 billion in royalties. Here’s a quick refresher of how the service works.

YouTube and its material ID partners sign an agreement allowing YouTube to scan its network for ‘fingerprints’ of material provided by rights holders. Partners supply YouTube with reference files for their own works, metadata, and specific ownership rights. Content ID then scans YouTube uploads and notifies rights holders through the YouTube Studio Content Manager. Rights holders can then choose whether to ban, monetize, or trace the matching content.

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In the first half of 2023, rightsholders decided to monetize more over 90% of all Content ID claims on the platform, with YouTube processing over 980 million claims. This represents a 25% increase over the previous year, when just 8,900 rightsholders filed Content ID claims.

In the first half of 2023, YouTube processed 826 million Content ID claims, demonstrating that rights holders prefer to monetize UGC content on YouTube rather than prohibit it entirely.

Of the approximately 9,000 Content ID rightsholders, 4,828 members accounted for 99% of all claims activity, averaging 200,000 Content ID claims per rightsholder. YouTube’s transparency report shows that UGC platforms provide a new opportunity for rightsholders to monetise their works.