Google updates YouTube creator guidelines for ad-friendly content

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Following on its commitment in March to review and beef up policies for ad-supported content, YouTube rolled out updated guidelines that include new focus on hateful and incendiary content.

In the aftermath of advertisers pulling out of YouTube after The Times of London reported many examples of brand ads showing up on extremist and violent content, Google was quick to try to regain advertiser confidence. Channels are no longer eligible for advertising until they reach 10,000 views, and search ads remain paused, for example. As a result, many creators have seen their ad revenue plummet or fluctuate significantly.

In a blog post Thursday, Ariel Bardin, VP of product management, said advertisers have been coming back to YouTube but acknowledged the past few months have been tough for some creators. “We know that revenue fluctuations have been unsettling and want to reassure you that we’re working closely with our advertising partners to make sure that YouTube continues to be a great place for creators to earn money. ”

More detailed & expanded guidelines

On June 1, 2017, YouTube added more detail and expanded the guidelines for content that can be monetized on YouTube. The previous version, shown below, was succinct.

The previous version of YouTube’s advertiser-friendly content guidelines as captured on May 31, 2017.

The updated version, below, provides significantly more detail for the existing ineligible content types and more explanation about the guidelines generally.

There are also more types of content that aren’t eligible for advertising: “hateful content,” “inappropriate use of family entertainment characters” and “incendiary and demeaning” content. These additions speak directly to the types of content advertiser protests flared up around.

As of June 1, 2017. Click to enlarge.

YouTube also launched a Creator Academy course that explains how to make content appealing to advertisers.

Creator reactions

Reactions to the blog post have been mixed. Among the complaints are several comments that YouTube is now encouraging “bland content.” Some creators note the potential impact on videos in the horror, parody and gaming genres. The requirement to reach 10,000 views also continues to be a sore point.

Bardin noted in the blog post,”We know our systems aren’t perfect and we’re also working to further improve your ability to appeal impacted videos.”

About The Author

As Third Door Media’s paid media reporter, Ginny Marvin writes about paid online marketing topics including paid search, paid social, display and retargeting for Search Engine Land and Marketing Land. With more than 15 years of marketing experience, Ginny has held both in-house and agency management positions. She provides search marketing and demand generation advice for ecommerce companies and can be found on Twitter as @ginnymarvin.


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