YouTube’s Latest Move May Ruin Some of Your Favorite Content

Some popular content creators are considering leaving the platform.

In a time where having a lucrative career as a full-time content creator is very much a reality — not to mention one of the most-wanted career paths for many young people today — even small changes on the social media platforms they use can send big ripples across their careers.

Take Amazon-owned  (AMZN) – Get Free Report Twitch for instance, a streaming platform used by more than a million people daily. 

Amazon previously offered a 70/30 revenue split to these content creators, but caused an uproar in Sept. 2022 when it announced it was moving many of its Twitch Partners to a 50/50 split model after the $100,000 earnings mark, taking a serious bite out of their profits.

While far from an unusual move, it was perceived to be a greedy one on Amazon’s part. But as the creator economy continues to grow at a seemingly exponential rate — worth $16.4 billion as of 2022 — the ways content creators have made money are very much in flux.

Now a change that Alphabet’s  (GOOG) – Get Free Report YouTube made in November 2022 is starting to take effect on some of those creators, and it could impact a lot of the content you enjoy on the platform.

What’s Changing About YouTube?

Video game content creators that use YouTube are raising the alarm that using profanity in many parts of their videos now means those videos will be demonetized, Kotaku reports.

“Our approach to profanity is changing,” Google’s Support page reads. “All varieties of profanity are now treated equally, meaning they are not differentiated based on levels of severity (for example, light, moderate, strong, or extreme) and we are not treating ‘hell’ and ‘damn’ as a profanity anymore. Therefore, profanity used in the title, thumbnails, or in the video’s first 7 seconds or used consistently throughout the video may not receive ad revenue.

Profanities used after the first eight seconds may receive ad revenue. Our position on not monetizing content with profanity throughout or comprising the majority of the video is not changing.”

This new rule is also being retroactively applied to videos creators have made in the past, meaning if they have created a highly successful video (or an entire catalog of them) that makes a lot of revenue and fits these terms, they will no longer make ad revenue on it.

Content Creators Are Very Unhappy

Several content creators that have had their content flagged have made videos explaining how this has affected them. 

Daniel Condren, the creator behind YouTube channel RTGame which has 2.76 million subscribers, posted a reaction video saying his content is being “age-restricted and demonetized.” 

“It’s made me doubt my relationship with YouTube as a platform,” Condren says. “This has shaken me quite badly.”

Sungwon Cho, another longtime YouTube personality who has 3.87 million subscribers on his channel ProZD, also made his own reaction video, cursing after the eight-second mark and saying “Hey YouTube, how about all the channels you support with ads that spew hate speech regularly?”

Cho, who’s been making content online since 2012, claims that YouTube responded by demonetizing the video.

“It reminds me of how bad demonetization was about five years ago,” Cho says. “It’s not a good sign.”

For parents with young kids or teens that watch YouTube’s gaming content, this may seem like very good news if you don’t want them hearing profanity.

But for people who have spent years building a content library and a following on YouTube, many of whom make content as a full-time job, it may be time to consider erasing profanity from their vocabulary — or finding a new place altogether to post their content.

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