On Thursday, Tomczak tweeted a screenshot of the complaints that have been lodged against his video, “10 Hours of Low Level White Noise.” The clip is exactly what its title advertises, and the absurdity of someone claiming ownership of a bunch of frequencies with equal intensity playing simultaneously—that’s all white noise is—clearly illustrates just how beyond broken YouTube’s automated copyright system really is.
What’s most egregious about the situation is that the claimants aren’t just disputing Tomczak’s right to upload the video—they’ve elected to monetize it and leave it up. Tomczak isn’t missing out on any big profits (the video only has 1,485 views), but running around YouTube monetizing white noise has plenty of opportunities to be a moneymaker. A simple search pulls up millions of white noise videos and many of them have millions of views. A lot of the offerings are relaxing sounds like rain or a fan, but there’s plenty of good, old-fashioned TV static that’s quite popular.