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The #YouTubeIsOverParty is in full swing – it’s trending on Twitter, videos are flooding in, and the conversation is hot and heavy – but let’s step away from the noise so we can chat about what all this means.
Over the last few days, creators have begun receiving notifications from YouTube that some of their videos are no longer eligible for monetization due to the content being “controversial”. Understandably, you have many questions and concerns, so we’ve been hard at work gathering the facts, and here’s the lowdown.
This policy is not new.
Though it may seem like a new policy, the ‘advertiser-friendly content guidelines’ have been in place for quite some time now, and YouTube has been actively enforcing this policy on videos which are considered ‘not advertiser-friendly’, including the following:
- Sexually suggestive content, including partial nudity and sexual humor
- Violence, including display of serious injury and events related to violent extremism
- Inappropriate language, including harassment, profanity and vulgar language
- Promotion of drugs and regulated substances, including selling, use and abuse of such items
- Controversial or sensitive subjects and events, including subjects related to war, political conflicts, natural disasters and tragedies, even if graphic imagery is not shown
The notifications. Those are new.
In a previous life (basically any day before Tuesday), if YouTube deemed a video to be ‘not advertiser-friendly’, monetization was disabled but creators were mostly left in the dark. No notifications, no emails, nothing. Unless you were actively checking your earnings analytics for each video, you may not have suspected a thing. Many creators are just now realizing that completely advertiser-friendly videos may have been driving no revenue for months! As pointed out by YouTube, they recently started rolling out notifications in your Video Manager and via email – which may take a few weeks to land in your inboxes.
You have the right to appeal!
If you’re the recipient of one of these notifications, and you believe your video is advertiser-friendly, you’re welcome to file an appeal – which you previously weren’t able to do.
Within the monetization settings for the affected video, you’ll find a checkbox to have YouTube review the content. If they agree with your request, ads will start back up again.
I could sit here, wag my finger at you, and scream “well, just don’t create controversial content!”, but I’m not about that life. We live in a world full of controversy just waiting to be talked about – and, as a creator, you have every right to voice your opinion (within legal limits, of course). As it stands right now, until YouTube gives advertisers the ability to opt-in to ‘potentially controversial content’, there may not be much we can do.
No, scratch that – there is something we can do. We can speak up. YouTube likely won’t revise their definition of ‘not advertiser-friendly’ videos, but if we come together as a community and have a discussion, YouTube could very well consider an opt-in for advertisers. After all, they currently offer an opt-in to displaying ads on ‘Adult content (DV-MA)’, so what’s one more category?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments as shoot your Tweets to @FullscreenNet.