YouTube loosens restrictions on licensed music for Shorts

YouTube on Pixel 7 Pro
(Image credit: Chris Wedel/Android Central)

What you need to know

  • YouTube Shorts will allow creators to use up to 60-seconds of copyrighted music.
  • This means that creators can have their favorite song playing for the entire duration of their short.
  • Not all songs will reach the 60-second cap, however, as some may still remain at the current 15-second limit.
  • This new feature has begun rolling out on Android and iOS with it becoming more widespread in the weeks ahead.

YouTube is giving creators a little more leeway with using licensed music in their Shorts.

According to Engadget, YouTube Shorts will allow creators to use up to 60 seconds of copyrighted music when creating a new video. This raises the bar from the previous, stifling 15-second time cap for copyrighted tunes. 

A full minute of a song also means that creators can have the song of their choice throughout the entirety of their YouTube Short. This newly expanded time cap has already begun rolling out for YouTube Shorts creators on Android and iOS, with the new feature becoming more widespread in the weeks ahead.

YouTube has apparently stated that this will apply to "most tracks" that creators can pick from and use in their short-form videos.

It's not clear at the moment how much audio will be available for creators at the new 60-second cap. Ideally, a bolstered catalog of music that Shorts creators can hop right into and use for the full duration of their content would be great. It would not only fuel its creators but also continue to drive its strong viewership momentum.

Also, it appears that creators will immediately know how much of a song they can utilize in their Short through YouTube's new song picker.

While YouTube Shorts is the platform's response to its competitor TikTok, the company has taken some steps to improve users' relationship with music. A couple of months ago, Google combined YouTube Music and Shorts to help creators find music easier to use in their short-form content through its "Sounds from Shorts" playlist.

Additionally, Google implemented another way to help make Shorts feel more lucrative and appealing to creators. YouTube recently announced that creators of Shorts will soon be able to hop into the Partner Program to begin taking a cut of ad revenue coming in when their content is viewed.

Hopefully, as YouTube looks to diversify its own short-form content and provide an engaging, creative space for its creators, the options available continue to advance.

Nickolas Diaz
News Writer

Nickolas is always excited about tech and getting his hands on it. Writing for him can vary from delivering the latest tech story to scribbling in his journal. When Nickolas isn't hitting a story, he's often grinding away at a game or chilling with a book in his hand.