Guinness World Records is Copystriking YouTubers, It’s Claimed (UPDATED)
Update: We reached out to Guinness World Records and they issued the following statement:
We experience a very high rate of copyright infringements with everything from products in shops to full TV shows being produced using our brand name but without our knowledge or permission. To help mitigate this, we use some software to help us identify infringements, however we have paused this on YouTube while we look into the process as we recognise this has caused some distress over recent days which was not our intention. Just to confirm this is for the use of our logo and not the use of the words ‘world record’.
With that in mind, feel free to read on!
Recently, concerns started surfacing online revealing that some YouTube creators were having copyright strikes issued against their content by Guinness World Records. It was first claimed that this was because of the use of the term ‘World Record’, but it now seems that it may be connected to the unauthorised use of Guinness World Records’ imagery and iconography in thumbnails and videos.
It’s of particular concern for gaming YouTubers, as there are tens of thousands of videos on the platform related to gamers chasing these ‘unofficial’ (or official) world records – and there are just as many thumbnails with the Guinness World Records emblem front and centre. Those that have uploaded videos claiming to have smashed the world record for solo kills on Warzone and that have used the GWR logo in their thumbnail are now potentially finding themselves in hot water.
But Is It A World Record?
At the very worst, the vast swathes of YouTubers claiming ‘world records’ simply by slapping an emblem on their video’s thumbnail are watering down what it means to truly earn a Guinness World Record. However, it is being argued in social circles that GWR is doing much more damage to its own brand image by issuing these ‘copystrikes’ against YouTubers.
It all kicked off when one user, DuckyTheGamer, posted on Twitter and highlighted a screenshot of an email from YouTube, warning them that a four-year-old YouTube video titled ‘I Carried a Fortnite Mobile WORLD RECORD HOLDER!’ had been taken down, thanks to a notice issued by Guinness World Records.
It was then that a few other impacted users came dashing out of the woodwork, eager to vent their fury against the body that has been chartering legitimate world records since 1955.
DuckyTheGamer went on to explain that legal action could arise if he were to challenge the takedown notice – he settled on simply deciding to ‘never use their logo in another thumbnail again.’
We’re yet to see if this is a mass movement or a series of smaller, targeted events. For instance, Ducky noted that the video in question was ‘manually detected’, which means that someone specifically sought it out and reported it for infringing on a copyright. He surmised that someone at GWR might have a grudge against him, but that was a statement made in jest.
Let us know if you’ve had any difficulties with GWR issuing copyright strikes against your content in a comment below. In the meantime, we’ve reached out to Guinness World Records for comment.