Is copyright infringed when any animation is redone and not literally copy cut pasted but if the whole animation is done from scratch with different colours and different background but if the creative concept in general is the same? It is possible that an animated segment looks very similar to another one but has maybe more objects different colours and background. Will it still be an infringement of copyright?

The animation made will be for an educational purpose but if uploaded on YouTube may/may not lead to monetisation....

  • What’s protected copyright and what’s permissible on YouTube are two different things. Jun 16, 2021 at 23:43
  • I agree with @JasonConrad, YouTube is using automatic solutions to flag content and they don't take the nuances and limits of the law into account. However, it happens typically when you use other peoples' audio/video and integrate it in mostly unchanged form into your own video. When doing an animation yourself, no such flagging should happen if you do the animations like you said, because it will look too different for the algorithm. There are YT channels where they recreate VFX from movies and even show the original scene (keeping it short) without any problems.
    – Matt
    Jun 17, 2021 at 7:15

1 Answer 1


Copyright laws or similar intellectual property laws usually protect creative works or excerpts from such works but not the ideas nor techniques that were used to create these works.

What you intend to do should be safe. Compare it with writing a story, where the final work is of course protected, but not the language itself, nor the plot ideas, structural decisions etc. Likewise, the steps to achieve a certain animation are not protected.

However, there is one tiny exception: source code. Some animation tools, like After Effects, let you write short scripts or expressions to enhance animations. Theoretically the code can be protected by copyright, but only if the code shows enough originality. There is a certain threshold of originality required to be protected, however it depends on the individual case where the threshold is. As a rough rule of thumb, if there are only a handful of lines of code then the script will most likely be too trivial to be protected. Also, if there are no alternative ways to write such a script because the environment dictates the lines of code, then you can safely copy and paste other people's code. Most of the time this will be the case.

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