Hi everybody. It’s sad video time. It just occurred to me as I was drawing the sad face. That sad face right there. That I’ve never really talked to any of you, even though I’ve spoken and you’ve heard me in the past, I’ve never talked to you outside of reading, and as you’re probably noticing now, I’m probably better at reading than I am at talking. But I can’t do that anymore as we’ll get to in a minute so this is what we’re left with: me talking to you. Depending on when you’re reading, huh sorry, when you’re watching this video you are either watching it because you’re a subscriber of mine and you’re wondering what happened. Or you’re watching it because you’re wondering if you can read books on the Internet at all. And I’m gonna address both of those things but the second part a little bit later. So first we’ll talk about what happened to the Channel.
I started in 2016 with this Channel. It was always about reading books and it started out actually with me reading books that were around my house. Just ones that were laying around that I already owned and my thinking at the time when I first started was not everybody has access to books. I’m gonna read this book, and that book, and that other book there on YouTube and just see if people want to see the books. And…. there were a few rationales for it in my mind. One was: I’m in a privileged position in my life and I have access to books, in a library, in a store, and the financial resources to get more and not everyone does. And so just like a library in my local community shares books with people who… either can’t get them another way, or wants to get them through the library, or that’s the easiest way, or the most affordable way, I can share them on the internet and see if there’s an interest in that. So that was part of it. Ummm… It started out really small with just stuff around my house as I said. But YouTube is fun. And the comments and the statistics and the analytics and the
growth that you see, both in views and comments and it just makes you want to do it more often. You want… you want to see that continue. So at first, I mean I was getting one view a day. Some books I wouldn’t get any views. ummm… But over time it just picks up and you… it’s… it’s contagious and you want to do more of it. So it kept going and getting bigger and bigger and bigger. Really slowly at first but then eventually over time it became a bit of a snowball effect. And then I started buying books that I liked and reading those. And my rationale when I was becoming a bigger Channel for why it made sense for both me and the publishers or authors of the books that I was reading was that I was promoting the books. And sales of those books were likely happening, well were happening, but more so than what I was seeing were likely happening quite a bit as a result of what I was doing on YouTube. And if you were a subscriber to the Channel and you ever looked at the comments or the descriptions you know
that in my descriptions I would link to the books. And then below that in my comments I would pin comments to the top of the comments linking to the books as well so there’d be… and actually in the description there were two links. There was a link at the top and then lower down there was another link with more of an explanation of why you should consider buying the book. And I.. I kept analytics on people linking through so I know that people were buying the books. That’s for sure the case. But, ummm… I think outside of YouTube and
them directly linking, a lot of purchases were being made of these books. And some people realized that. I had authors and publishers reach out to me and ask me to read their books quite a bit which if you were a subscriber to the Channel you know because you’d see it in the comments – people asking me to read their books all the time. ummm… The strategy worked for a time. ummm… But then it didn’t. And there were some early indications that it wasn’t gonna work and then there was the final moments of me realizing that it had to end. ummm… Early on I would get a takedown notice for copyright infringement once every one to six months. I… I… Even when the channel was pretty big I could go at times for many months without getting a notice but once in a while I would get one and when I would get one what I would do is just stop reading for that publisher. Cause’ typically it would be the publisher that did the takedown. So I’d get a takedown notice or for copyright infringement, which means that the books gone. It’s off YouTube. And then as the “creator” you get a, well you have to go to copyright school which is a little online course that you do. And you have to acknowledge what constitutes copyright infringement, and basically commit that you’re not gonna do that again. Umm… My thinking was: Well, I’ve got publishers and authors who are asking me to read their books in some cases. And so this publisher has made it clear that they don’t want me to read theirs, so I’ll just stop reading their books and I won’t have a problem with that publisher
again. I will get no more takedown notices from this publisher because I don’t read their books and everything will be fine. And, as I said that worked for a while but it stopped working recently for me for a couple reasons. I… I didn’t have my channel deleted. The way YouTube works is if you have three copyright infringement takedowns within a 90-day period you lose your Channel. What that means is you do not have your Channel anymore. It is gone. And everything on it is gone. And depending on who you ask you might not be able to be on YouTube anymore as a “Creator” even if you try to
start a new Channel because YouTube has pretty advanced ways of determining whether or not someone is creating multiple Channels and trying to get
around their rules associated with copyright infringement or Community Guidelines strikes. So… what happened to me was at first it was just the publishers or representatives of authors that would ask me to stop through… through a takedown notice. But then later what I was getting was takedown notices from companies that represent publishers. And those are more difficult to determine where they’re coming from and who they represent because these companies can represent multiple authors, multiple publishers. And once I started getting those, and I, and specifically, once I got two within 35 days I realized that I had to make a decision about whether or not I wanted to just keep my Channel up until I was taken down – which I thought was just a matter of time, or put a stop to it. And so, I made the tough choice of putting a stop to it by taking down everything that I had ever put up and deleting it off YouTube. It’s gone, and it will never go back up because for me being on YouTube and being able to create content, different content in the future, is more important than what I was doing before staying up for who knows how long: another day, another week. It’s possible that it would have made it through 90 days and then reset for me but the writing was on the wall. It was clear that it wasn’t gonna be sustainable and it wasn’t gonna continue. And the other piece that made that clear to me was that all the other Channels that were big have already gone away. And if you’ve watched those other channels you know they’re gone. I was the only one that was big that was left. I was the biggest kid-focused book-reading channel left on YouTube when I made the decision to take down all of my content, which in fairness is not really my content. It’s the content of the publishers and authors and creators of the content. I was really just reading the books so you know in fairness I have to recognize that what I was doing was wrong and even though I tried to rationalize it and justify it by saying: Well, I’m promoting these books. I didn’t have explicit permission of these publishers or authors to do that so I got what I deserved. It needed to come down and it has. So, lesson learned. It’s over. ummm… To those of you who are doing it now or considering doing it I would say don’t bother. It’s just going to be a frustrating experience because at the end of the day you’re going to have your
Channel taken down. And I thought you know at one point I thought if my Channel gets taken down so be it but the reality is, had my Channel gotten taken… had my Channel been taken down and I had lost everything and not been able to be on YouTube anymore I would be sad about that. Even more so than I am now. And believe me I’m sad already, but not being able to be on the platform at all would be worse. So I would say don’t bother. Ummm… I guess that’s the answer to the question of can you publish books on YouTube or can you read books on YouTube. No, you can’t. The books are copyrighted and those copyright owners, unless they give you explicit written permission or ask you to read them, you can’t read them. That’s the answer. And even though it won’t happen right away, eventually you’ll get kicked off YouTube. And there’s also other possible implications that could come from it. A publisher could sue you, or who knows I mean it’s just, it’s just not worth doing so that’s my feeling on it. I mean, different people have different thoughts, but based on my experience and also seeing all these other Channels that were so big get taken down over the years, I think it’s pretty clear you can’t do it. You shouldn’t do it. Don’t bother doing it. As far as this Channel is concerned: I’m gonna change the Channel into something else. Obviously
it’s gonna be, ummm… TOTALLY DIFFERENT. I have a lot of subscribers, maybe you’re one of them. I would say stick around, you might like what you see. I’m gonna try to do my best for, well, what my skill set is which I think is, ummm… well the same sort of style
of videos but just with different content. uhhh.. Definitely not reading though, well, not reading books anyway. So, I guess you’ll have to stay tuned to see what
that turns into. Whether or not you stay with me though, thanks for all the fun times over the last three years. I really enjoyed reading the books to you, and getting your feedback on the experience of… of hearing me read the books, and it means a lot to me – all the interactions that we had, and I had a lot of fun. So, hopefully stick around, if you don’t take care and regardless of what happens with that THANK YOU enjoy the rest of today.