YouTube are Allowing Appeals on Ad Restrictions

Sprout Social
One of the biggest issues YouTube has faced recently has been ad regulation. They faced an immense backlash when brands started discovering that their ads were appearing on extremist and offensive videos and began pulling their funding, and even since they started untangling that web, more and more criticisms have surfaced.

For the most part, they've dealt with this by tightening restrictions on which videos can make money from ad revenue, but that's brought its own issues, as some publishers have complained that their content as been unfairly blacklisted. In particular, "inappropriate use of family-friendly characters" has been earmarked as unsuitable for ad revenue, which has gone down like a lead ballon among some of the more prominent comedy video publishers.

More broadly, the issue has been that publishers don't actually know why their videos aren't allowed to make money, and this is something YouTube are now taking steps to deal with. Now there's a colour coding system for videos which indicates exactly how much profit they're entitled to. A green dollar sign means they can earn money from any an all forms of advertising and YouTube Red, while yellow signed videos can still earn from Red, but a more limited set of advertisers. A black dollar sign, ironically, means that the video can't make any money whatsoever.

It's useful, if vague, but it goes beyond that. If a particular publisher disagrees with the way their content has been labelled, they can appeal. YouTube's reporting systems don't exactly have the best track record, especially with regards to flagging inappropriate content, but at the very least it's a gesture of good faith to the creator community, a demonstration that YouTube are open to suggestion on their policies.

How well it will actually work remains to be seen, YouTube have been struggling to find an ideal balance between the way they police content and keep their publishers happy, as well as making sure brands feel like they're advertising in safe space. Things are moving in the right direction though, and anything which gives the user base a voice in what goes on has to be a positive step in some sense or another.

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