So YouTube, again, from the manner of consecutive violations of its community guidelines made by several content creators in the past months, is changing its YouTube Partner Program eligibility policy – which literally removes small-time creators from its monetization block.
It’s not all about killing the chances of small-time creators to earn. It’s also about protecting the community which YouTube has grown up on its several years of existence. No matter how big a community is, if issue(s) strikes, it may leave them with nothing.
Now, we will translate this post made by YouTube with our explanations and some analyzation made by the community as well – in order to help those people understand why YouTube is doing this, and in our efforts to simplify everything tech.
(Editors Note: Texts marked in bold, underlined and italicized are from the YouTube Blog’s post.)
2017 marked a tough year for many of you, with several issues affecting our community and the revenue earned from advertising through the YouTube Partner Program (YPP). Despite those issues more creators than ever are earning a living on YouTube, with the number of channels making over six figures up over 40% year-over-year. In 2018, a major focus for everyone at YouTube is protecting our creator ecosystem and ensuring your revenue is more stable.
Translation: 2017 is the year where the what-so-called ‘adpocalypse’ had happen (demonetization strikes, flagged videos), while creators who are earning more than six-figures ($100,000+) have increased to over 40%. Meaning that even the ‘adpocalypse’ existed, many creators still make the cut. Imagine earning six figures while doing videos? That alone, motivates most of us right?
As Susan mentioned in December, we’re making changes to address the issues that affected our community in 2017 so we can prevent bad actors from harming the inspiring and original creators around the world who make their living on YouTube. A big part of that effort will be strengthening our requirements for monetization so spammers, impersonators, and other bad actors can’t hurt our ecosystem or take advantage of you, while continuing to reward those who make our platform great.
Transliteration: According to them, the abuse to their platform was made mostly by small-time YouTube Creators, which they hidden in the codename of ‘bad actors’ and/or whatever they wanted to call. They thought that the strengthening of monetization eligibility requirements is one of the key to prevent the issue, which is actually not.
The issue here is that no matter what the size of your empire are (whether you have less than 1,000 or more than 1 Million subscribers), the conduct and/or attitude of the creators as shown on their videos. Most of them don’t even observe their content abiding with the platform’s primary guidelines (YT community, Adsense, and YPP guidelines), yet, earning more than 90% of the small-time YouTubers that exists.
Back in April of 2017, we set a YPP eligibility requirement of 10,000 lifetime views. While that threshold provided more information to determine whether a channel followed our community guidelines and policies, it’s been clear over the last few months that we need a higher standard.
Transliteration: Their previous threshold change to be eligible to YouTube Partner Program (YPP) is not enough or not working to combat abuses to their platform. See? The issue here is not that new and small-time creators are the culprit, the issue here is that EXISTING creators who’ll do anything to earn, even providing content which is unnecessarily healthy to the platform (clickbaits, scandalous, cancerous and unpleasant topics).
What we thought to be a solution at the very least is to manually review the videos made by several creators (including the big, six-figure earning ones). While we also know that tons of videos are uploaded into YouTube every single minute, if they really want to protect their creators, make it sure that the uploaded videos doesn’t harm or violate the community guidelines, before anybody else could watch it.
Don’t be biased, YouTube.
Most creators nowadays have this in mind, believe us or not. “We started YouTube to earn, and to make it a source of livelihood for the rest of our lives.” They even say that passion keeps them motivated to do videos, but with the money involved, it seems to be opposite. If you are that passionate enough, even with this standards, you wouldn’t be discouraged to use the platform.
YT still got the biggest audience among all platforms out there, so the chances are of your content being discovered is still A LOT.
Starting today we’re changing the eligibility requirement for monetization to 4,000 hours of watchtime within the past 12 months and 1,000 subscribers. We’ve arrived at these new thresholds after thorough analysis and conversations with creators like you.
Transliteration: They’re changing the eligibility requirement, again. 4,000 hours is equivalent to 240,000 minutes so probably channels who have these numbers have more than 1,000 subscribers. We didn’t even know when YouTube conducted its survey for this matter, so what?
They will allow us to significantly improve our ability to identify creators who contribute positively to the community and help drive more ad revenue to them (and away from bad actors). These higher standards will also help us prevent potentially inappropriate videos from monetizing which can hurt revenue for everyone.
Transliteration: I’ll repeat, I don’t know why YouTube is targeting creators who don’t have access to monetization just yet. Small-time creators are working hard, giving better content than anyone else to at least attain the 10,000 lifetime views threshold. If they really want to prevent monetization of inappropriate videos, consider checking them manually if the video itself or metadata seems suspicious at upload.
Don’t pass on the burden to just small-time creators like us.
On February 20th, 2018, we’ll also implement this threshold across existing channels on the platform, to allow for a 30 day grace period. On that date, channels with fewer than 1,000 subs or 4,000 watch hours will no longer be able to earn money on YouTube. When they reach 1,000 subs and 4,000 watch hours they will be automatically re-evaluated under strict criteria to ensure they comply with our policies. New channels will need to apply, and their application will be evaluated when they hit these milestones.
Transliteration: If you don’t have 1,000 subscribers or 4,000 hours of watch time within 12-months (data can be viewed on your Analytics section), say goodbye to your access the YouTube Partner Program. You can still re-apply, under their new undefined strict policies and criteria and chances are you’ll be accepted if you don’t violate any of their guidelines. For existing channels, you’ll be re-evaluated or apply manually if you failed to reach the new threshold by February 20th.
Though these changes will affect a significant number of channels, 99% of those affected were making less than $100 per year in the last year, with 90% earning less than $2.50 in the last month. Any of the channels who no longer meet this threshold will be paid what they’ve already earned based on our AdSense policies. After thoughtful consideration, we believe these are necessary compromises to protect our community.
Transliteration: YouTube is acknowledging that it will affect 99% of those channels who make less than $100 a year. They don’t know that most quality content also comes from those channels as well. Of course, if you don’t earn $100 a year, you won’t be get paid based on AdSense policies ($100 minimum earnings before you get paid), so your earnings will be stacked up until you have your monetization enabled and start earning again.
Yes, they’re acknowledging the compromises they’ve made – it actually leads to most creators being discouraged and giving them hard time to decide whether to continue doing YouTube or not. For some, this might seem to be an advantage as the amount of YouTube creators (considered as competitors, too) would be decreased, effectively de-congesting the congested platform and giving them more chances for their videos to be discovered.
Of course, size alone is not enough to determine whether a channel is suitable for monetization, so we’ll continue to use signals like community strikes, spam, and other abuse flags to ensure we’re protecting our creator community from bad actors. As we continue to protect our platform from abuse, we want to remind all of you to follow YouTube’s Community Guidelines, Monetization Basics & Policies, Terms of Service, and Google AdSense program policies, as violating any of these may lead to removal from the YouTube Partner Program.
Transliteration: They finally got our point. Size alone doesn’t determine whether a channel can earn. Bad actors are really there and they don’t just come in the form of newbies and small-time creators, but they come with the thoughts and chances of having monetary gain from doing bad acts, which YouTube constantly provides. Don’t just flag videos if your algorithm deems them, review them manually and see if they really hit flags. Take immediate action after.
It might be harsh, but that’s an effective way to do protect us.
While this change will tackle the potential abuse of a large but disparate group of smaller channels, we also know that the bad action of a single, large channel can also have an impact on the community and how advertisers view YouTube. We’ll be working to schedule conversations with our creators in the months ahead so we can hear your thoughts and ideas and what more we can do to tackle that challenge.
Transliteration: They also see that bad actions of a single, large channel can also have an impact on how advertisers and the community sees YouTube. Once a popular YouTuber like Logan Paul commits something wrong, advertisers see it as a whole, damaging YouTube’s reputation, even though literally they don’t have any knowledge from it until somebody reported or flagged the video to them.
This means that these recent changes made are done in order to prevent more backlashes against their platform due to the bad acts of its primary creators itself.
One of YouTube’s core values is to provide anyone the opportunity to earn money from a thriving channel, and while our policies will evolve over time, our commitment to that value remains. Those of you who want more details around this change, or haven’t yet reached this new 4,000 hour/1,000 subscriber threshold can continue to benefit from our Creator Academy, our Help Center, and all the resources on the Creator Site to grow your channels.
Transliteration: Yeah, their core values is to provide ANYONE the opportunity to earn money from a thriving channel, so literally that commitment remains. However, with this new threshold, and number of new creators popping out, it will be more harder to attain monetization status due to competition.
Although we apply those practices to grow our channels, we can’t simply make it a one-time-big-hit and reach several audience at once due to the platform’s congestion. There’s so many videos out there that your chances of discoverability, even with good SEO optimization, is still low.
Even though 2017 was a challenging year, thanks to creators like you, it was full of the moments that make YouTube such a special place. Creators large and small, established and emerging, transformed their talent and originality into videos that captivated over a billion people around the world. They made us laugh, taught us about our world and warmed our hearts. We’re confident the steps we’re taking today will help protect and grow our inspiring community well into the future.
Transliteration: Yep, 2017 indeed was a challenging year for all of us. Changes to monetization’s policies makes it much harder to earn from your hard-worked creations. Those videos made us laugh, taught us about the world and so on. They’re also confident that their measures helps to protect the community they’ve made now and into the future.
Our final thoughts
Seriously, we are not angry at YouTube about this (even it literally deprives us of the ability to earn by now from the platform). It helps us to be motivated more, to do more, and to be protected at the very least from another adpocalypse where advertisers tend to leave because of wrongdoings made by YouTube Creators.
While there’s an uprise on the number of creators who are inspired mainly due to their popular idols who make money with YouTube, we can’t definitely say that small-time creators are the main culprit behind this problem.
A solution to the problem, indeed, is manual review and moderation of every suspicious or probably, every YPP participant videos when uploaded on YouTube.
Stricter policies means healthier community for YouTube, I guess?
“Strive to make quality content that will be enjoyed and shared by viewers, not just to make money from it.”
After all, we are all saying that “PASSION” is the one that motivates us to create content, but it seems that “MONEY” is the one for some. We should get away with the ideology that YouTube could be a source of livelihood, at least for now.